In March, Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) leaders appointed by President Obama presented a report to the White House with recommendations on how 23 federal agencies and offices can improve the everyday lives of AAPIs. The report addresses problems uniquely facing Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, such as linguistic isolation, health problems that disproportionately affect AAPIs, bullying, and other civil rights issues.
The report was submitted to the White House during a gathering of two groups created under the executive order establishing the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders — the President’s Advisory Commission and the federal Interagency Working Group, which includes representatives from almost every federal agency.
“This report shows how the federal government is taking action to address unique AAPI needs,” said Daphne Kwok, chairwoman of the President’s Advisory Commission on AAPIs.
“Hopefully, federal agencies will implement these recommendations as quickly as possible.”
Recommendations in the report include the following:
— Early identification of chronic hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection in Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders that don’t know they have the virus. Hepatitis B chronically infects about 1.5 million people in the United States. AAPIs account for more than half of all the cases.
— Strengthening of Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions programs to increase college graduation rates for AAPI students. While educational attainment among East Asian and South Asian groups is high, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders have lower high school graduation rates. ♦
An electronic copy of the report presented to President Obama is available at go.usa.gov/4vJ.