by Linh Chuong. This post originally appeared on the SEARAC blog.
In 1986, my dad was forced to flee Vietnam because of persecution. He came to the United States as a refugee and was relocated to Oakland along with my three older brothers. As a child, I remained in Vietnam with my mother and three siblings, and my father filed paperwork to bring the rest of my family to the United States so we could be together again. We spent almost a decade apart before we were reunited as a family in East Oakland eight years later.
by Beth Baker. This article originally appeared on Next Avenue.
Micaela Rios, 64, who immigrated to rural western Kansas from Mexico 20 years ago, has a difficult job in a meatpacking plant. After years of packing beef in cold, wet conditions, she developed arthritis and high blood pressure. When she was 60, she had a heart attack.
Many immigrants and refugees work alongside her, some of them older than she, Rios said. Despite the arduous work, she feels lucky that the job comes with health insurance. She hopes to retire once Medicare kicks in.
“One reason she hasn’t retired is because of her health insurance,” said her daughter, Karla Davila, who acted as her mother’s interpreter for this interview..... Read More
Southeast Asian Americans Speak Out to Protect Affordable Healthcare
For many Southeast Asian Americans, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) repeal fight last year felt personal.
When the ACA was first passed, uninsured rates in Cambodian, Hmong, Lao, and Vietnamese American communities were high. Compared to the 15% of Americans overall who did not have health insurance in 2011, 20% of Cambodian, 20% of Vietnamese, 19% of Laotian, and 16% of Hmong Americans were uninsured. Too many families used emergency rooms as last-resort healthcare providers or went for years without regular check-ups.
Only four years later in 2015, the uninsured rate was cut in half. Thousands of families were finally accessing the preventative and life-saving care that they needed. Some accessed care through the healthcare exchange, supported by subsidies to.... Read More
By Alice Daniel. This article originally appeared on txhaub.com.
When Yong Yang Xiong arrived in Fresno, California fourteen years ago at the age of 53, he really wanted to find a job. But he couldn’t speak English–and employers told him he was too old. On top of that, he was suffering from chronic physical pain.
“As a petite man, I was given very heavy loads to carry for days and nights,” he said, referring to the six long years he had spent helping the CIA fight its secret war in Laos.
When the war ended, he fled on foot to a refugee camp in Thailand where he spent the next 26 years. He and his family didn’t.... Read More
Southeast Asian Americans March in DC to Commemorate Community’s Fight for Justice, Freedom, and Self-Determination
On Saturday, October 14, 150 Cambodian, Hmong, Laotian, and Vietnamese Americans and allies converged on the National Mall in Washington, DC, as part of the Southeast Asian American March for Equity. The march coincided with the national gathering Moving Mountains: A Southeast Asian American Equity Summit. National leaders and organizers from diverse Southeast Asian American communities came together to reflect on the community’s 40+ year journey from surviving war and displacement as refugees to honoring and carrying on the legacy of the American civil rights movement.
The Diverse Elders Coalition is attending this week’s Moving Mountains equity summit in Washington, DC, hosted by the Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC). National Managing Coordinator Jenna McDavid wrote this blog to highlight the importance of bringing older adults into the fight for equity, justice and freedom. On Saturday, October 14th, participants of the summit will march from the Vietnam Veterans Memorial to the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial in DC. Learn more and join the march here.
When I joined the Diverse Elders Coalition (DEC) in 2015 as a Communications Associate, once of my first tasks was to find us some good stock photography that we could use in our reports and on our website..... Read More
Stop the Inhumane Prison Transfer of Manuel Syphanh Khiobouakham
My name is Phat McGlothlin. I am the mother of Manuel Syphanh Khiobouakham, who is currently serving a 7-year state prison sentence.
About two months ago, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) transferred my son from Vacaville, California to Eloy, Arizona — ripping apart my family’s connection to my son.
I was born in a refugee camp in Thailand during the aftermath of the American War in Vietnam and the Secret War in Laos. During the Secret War, Laos was bombed more heavily than any other country in history: nearly one ton of bombs were.... Read More
New Partnership Working to Strengthen Aging in AAPI Communities
The National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA) is pleased to introduce and welcome you to our newly established Affiliate Network (AFN)! The AFN is a partnership between NAPCA and organizations that serve Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) older adults and their families. This newly-formed network is aimed at strengthening the mutual delivery of services to preserve and promote the dignity, well-being, and quality of life of AAPI older adults as they age.
Through the operation of the Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP) training for older adults, NAPCA has developed partnerships with over 400 community based-organizations in seven states. The AFN will solidify that partnership and expand to include organizations that provide.... Read More
Aggressive Deportation Policies Tear Family Caregivers Away From the Elders Who Depend on Them
Show your community solidarity against efforts to divide us.
The Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC) is a proud champion of the nationwide, community-driven movement to disaggregate Asian American and Pacific Islander data categories to reveal the tremendous diversity and unmet needs within our communities. We denounce efforts by a small faction to divide the community based on fear-mongering and distortion – join us by signing on to this open letter.
We celebrate the historical strides that community-based organizations have made in passing or introducing legislation at the state level for data disaggregation ranging from.... Read More
Community Healing and Intergenerational Support: An Interview with Nkauj Iab Yang of SEARAC
Did you know? Federal agencies (like those that administer education, housing, and employment programs, just to name a few) are NOT required to count detailed data for diverse communities. Instead of asking whether an elder identifies as “Cambodian,” “Vietnamese,” or “Marshallese,” they simply ask whether a person is “Asian.” People who are Puerto Rican, Mexican, or Brazilian are all lumped together as “Latino.” And agencies are not required to ask ANY questions about sexual orientation or gender identity — and efforts are even underway to remove those questions from federal surveys that do ask for that information. This means our communities remain misrepresented, left out of policy and program decisions, and under-funded.