NSC attends White House Summit on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders

May 15, 2015

Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPIs) are now the fastest growing racial group in the United States, according to the White House, increasing over four times as rapidly as the total U.S. population and expected to double to more than 47 million by 2060. The White House Initiative on AAPIs held a national summit on May 12 in Washington D.C. to recognize the tremendous growth and unique needs within AAPI communities. The Summit brought together leaders from different fields to examine intersections for better serving vulnerable AAPI communities.

NSC communications associate Yuri Chang attended the convening and participated in breakout sessions on issues such as increasing educational equity, data disaggregation, and language access. The summit highlighted efforts by the White House Task Force on New Americans to create a federal strategic plan on immigrant and refugee integration. NSC submitted recommendations to the Task Force earlier this year and is currently working with partners to advance key workforce and education priorities identified in the strategic plan.

Attendees heard from AAPI Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, whose experiences helped inform the public debate on immigration reform. (See NSC’s report on education and workforce issues facing DACA youth, Missing in Action.)

Summit speakers also stressed the importance of data disaggregation to target overlooked and underserved AAPI communities who would otherwise benefit from federal programs and resources.

Summit attendees heard from numerous federal officials on AAPI impact and outreach, including six U.S. Cabinet Secretaries: Sec. Tom Perez of the Department of Labor, Sec. Arne Duncan of the Department of Education, Sec. Sylvia Burwell of the Department of Health and Human Services, Sec. Julian Castro of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, Sec. Sally Jewell of the Department of the Interior, and Sec. Jeh Johnson of the Department of Homeland Security. Rep. Judy Chu, Rep. Ami Bera, Rep. Mike Honda, and Rep. Barbara Lee also gave remarks.

NSC is pleased to see the alignment of its efforts with those of the White House Initiative on AAPIs, and applauds the Initiative for highlighting both the unmet needs and the contributions and assets of the AAPI community.