Originally published: May 31, 2020
Contact: Joon Bang
Dear NAPCA members and friends,
On Friday morning, we issued a statement via NAPCA’s social media channels regarding the murder of Mr. George Floyd:
We are all witnesses to the murder of George Floyd. The National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA) stands in solidarity with communities across the country and the residents of Minneapolis in demanding immediate justice and transparency for Mr. Floyd, his family and friends. Police officers Derek Chauvin, Thomas Lane, Tou Thao, and J Alexander Keung must be held accountable for their actions to the fullest extent of the law and we call on authorities to provide protection for and honor the space of people exercising their right to protest without intimidation and fear.
I am writing you today because I have always believed that the privileges afforded to me as an Asian American living in the United States was made possible by the courage and sacrifices of the leaders of the Civil Rights Movement. Their efforts paved the way for all minority groups to be included in the discussion of equality in America. The murder of George Floyd not only deserves swift justice it should serve as a reminder of the grim inequities that run rampant in our society today. An injustice against one community is an affront to all of our communities. We need to support one another to fight the systemic racism and bigotry that have long robbed marginalized, black, indigenous, and other diverse communities. Below are some of the organizations that are fighting racial injustice and resources that I hope would support you to get engaged.
Police reform and the history of injustice affecting the African American community
The NAACP Legal Defense Fund (LDF) is our nation’s first legal organization fighting racism. It was founded in 1940 by Thurgood Marshall, our country’s first Supreme Court Justice of color, and the chief architect behind the effort to desegregate the south through the landmark case, Brown v. Board of Ed. LDF is fighting for justice in the courts so that all people of color and backgrounds have a voice. Their work for police reform is especially important in light of the death of George Floyd and is leading a petition to insist that city officials ensure the safe policing of Minneapolis in times of unrest. What is lesser known is that Thurgood Marshall and LDF was responsible for the beginning of the Asian American Legal Defense Fund , an organization protecting and promoting the civil rights of Asian Americans.
Asian American resources to get involved
Our partner, SEARAC has compiled resources for Asian American communities to get involved:
- A blog post by Michelle Kim of Awaken Blog highlights steps individuals can take to show solidarity;
- Read the Asian American Racial Justice Toolkit, a project hosted by Asian American Pacific Islanders for Civic Empowerment;
- Read the ACLU’s manual – Fighting Police Abuse: A Community Action, which offers a guide for communities of color to reform their local law enforcement relationships and standards;
- Register for a Bystander Intervention Training, offered by Hollaback! in partnership with Asian Americans Advancing Justice. Although focused on anti-Asian hate crimes, they also offer broad strategies for intervention.
The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA) and its members, which includes the National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA) have joined the Coalition of Asian American Leaders (CAAL) in issuing a statement of Unity & Solidarity for George Floyd.
The Diverse Elders Coalition (DEC) is working together to ensure that the voice of racially and ethnically diverse people; American Indians and Alaska Natives; and lesbian, gay, bisexual and/or transgender people is being advocated for and is standing in solidarity for justice for George Floyd.
Call to action
We hope you would join the conversation by contacting your congressional representatives ( find your representative here ) to let them know it’s time for police reform or share these resources and organizations with your networks to support their work.
President & CEO
The National Asian Pacific Center on Aging
The NAPCA Helpline is currently available with live support for residents in Los Angeles and Seattle in five different languages: English, Cantonese, Mandarin, Vietnamese, and Korean. All Helpline counselors are available every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8:30 am to 1:00 pm PST. The Helpline provides resources and information on the COVID-19, voicemail option to collect stories from older adults and their caregivers, and guided meditations in 8 languages.
English: 1-800-336-2722 | 廣東話: 1-800-582-4218 | 普通话: 1-800-683-7427 | 한국어: 1-800-582-4259 | 日本語: 1-800-398-1117 | Tagalog: 1-800-593-8087 | Tiếng Việt: 1-800-582-4336 | Español: 1-800-948-3844
National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA)
Founded in 1979, NAPCA is a national non-profit organization that preserves and promotes the dignity, well-being and quality of life of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) and diverse older adults. In its 40 years, NAPCA has served over 100,000 diverse older adults through the organization’s Senior Community Service Employment Program (SCSEP), Senior Environmental Employment Program (SEE), and its Resource Center. For more information, please visit: www.napca.org.