As of 5-26-16, over 150 organizations have signed on to our national statement in support of affirmative action. These include organizations representing the full diversity of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community, and legal, civil rights, health, housing, social service and student organizations with deep and rich histories serving AANHPI communities.
18MillionRising.orgAfter BruceAmerica Innovates American College Personnel Association - Asian Pacific American NetworkAPI Equality - LAArab American Action Network (AAAN)Arab American Democratic ClubAsia Pacific Cultural CenterAsian & Pacific Islander American Health ForumAsian American Initiative at Fuller Theological SeminaryAsian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF)Asian American Ministry Program, Seattle Pacific UniversityAsian American Organizing ProjectAsian American Psychological AssociationAsian American Resource Center, Pomona CollegeAsian American Student Union at Scripps CollegeAsian American Student Union at University of Maryland College ParkAsian American Student Union at University of Minnesota, Twin CitiesAsian American Studies Program, Cornell UniversityAsian American Studies Program, Hunter College, CUNYAsian American Studies Program, University of Maryland College ParkAsian American Studies, California State University SacramentoAsian American Studies, Northwestern UniversityAsian American Studies, San Francisco State UniversityAsian Americans Advancing Justice - AAJCAsian Americans Advancing Justice - Asian Law CaucusAsian Americans Advancing Justice - AtlantaAsian Americans Advancing Justice - CaliforniaAsian Americans Advancing Justice - ChicagoAsian Americans Advancing Justice - LAAsian Americans UnitedAsian Community Development CouncilAsian Immigrant Women AdvocatesAsian Law Alliance Asian Pacific American Bar Association of Los Angeles CountyAsian Pacific American Coalition at Northwestern UniversityAsian Pacific American Labor Alliance - Alameda ChapterAsian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO (APALA)Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance - Los Angeles ChapterAsian Pacific American Law Student Association, University of San Francisco School of LawAsian Pacific American Law Students Association, UC Hastings Asian Pacific American Law Students Association, Columbia UniversityAsian Pacific American Law Students Association, Yale Law SchoolAsian Pacific American Network of Oregon (APANO)Asian Pacific American Religions Research InitiativeAsian Pacific American Student Development, UC BerkeleyAsian Pacific American Student Involvement & Advocacy, University of Maryland College ParkAsian Pacific American Studies Program, University of VirginiaAsian Pacific American Women Lawyers Alliance (APAWLA)Asian Pacific Americans for Action at Cornell University (APAA)Asian Pacific Americans in Higher Education (APAHE)Asian Pacific Coalition, UCLAAsian Pacific Environmental NetworkAsian Pacific Islander Knowledge Community (APIKC)Asian Pacific Partners for Empowerment, Advocacy and Leadership (APPEAL)Asian Pacific Policy & Planning CouncilAsian Services In ActionAsian Students Association, Baylor UniversityAssociation of Asian Pacific Community Health OrganizationsAssociation of Harvard Asian and Asian American Faculty and StaffASPIRE Los AngelesBerkeley Cambodian Student AssociationCAAAV Organizing Asian CommunitiesCalifornia Faculty Association - Asian Pacific Islander CaucusCenter for APA WomenCenter for Asian American MediaCenter for Asian American Studies, University of Massachusetts, LowellCenter for Asian American Studies, University of Texas at AustinCenter for Pan Asian Community Services (CPACS)Chinese for Affirmative ActionChinese Progressive Association Chinese Students and Scholars AssociationCoalition for a Better Chinese American CommunityCouncil for Native Hawaiian AdvancementCRAASH: Coalition for the Revitalization of Asian American Studies at Hunter CollegeDRUM - Desis Rising Up & MovingEast Coast Asian American Student Union (ECAASU)Eclipse RisingEmpowering Pacific Islander CommunitiesEthnic Studies, University of California, San DiegoFilipino Advocates for JusticeFilipino Cultural Association, University of Maryland College ParkFilipino Student Association, Baylor UniversityFood Chain Workers AllianceFresno Interdenominational Refugee MinistriesGABRIELA Los AngelesGay Asian Pacific Islander Men of New York (GAPIMNY) Harvey Mudd College Office of Institutional DiversityHmong Innovating PoliticsHmong National DevelopmentINHERITANCE magazineJapanese American Citizens League - NationalJapanese American Citizens League, Hollywood ChapterJapanese American Citizens League, San Francisco ChapterK-12 News NetworkK.W. Lee Center for LeadershipKAYA: Filipino Americans for ProgressKhmer Girls in Action Kimchi MamasKIWA (Koreatown Immigrant Workers Alliance)KmB, Pro-People YouthKorean Resource CenterKorean Students Association, Baylor UniversityLao Association of Connecticut, Inc.Laotian American National AllianceLeadership Education for Asian Pacifics, Inc. (LEAP)Little Tokyo Service CenterMarshallese Educational InitiativeMidwest Asian American Student UnionMinority Inclusion Project Inc. NANAY, Inc.National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health AssociationNational Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA)National Asian Pacific American Families Against Substance Abuse (NAPAFASA)National Asian Pacific American Women's ForumNational Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community DevelopmentNational Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA)National Council of Asian Pacific Islander PhysiciansNational Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA)National Korean American Service and Education Consortium (NAKASEC )National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA)National Tongan American SocietyNative Hawaiian & Pacific Islander AllianceNative Hawaiian Education CouncilNikkei for Civil Rights & Redress (NCRR)OCA - Greater Los AngelesOCA - Greater SeattleOCA - SacramentoOCA - Asian Pacific American AdvocatesPacific Islander Health PartnershipPapa Ola LokahiPhiladelphia South Asian CollectivePilipino Workers CenterPolitical Latinxs United for Movement and Action in SocietyProvidence Youth Student MovementReal Tree IncResearch on the Education of Asian Pacific Americans (REAPA) of the American Education Research AssociationResearch. Educate. Aspire. Change. History (REACH)SEIU-UHWSouth Asian American Policy & Research Institute (SAAPRI)South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT)South Asian NetworkSoutheast Asian Education CoalitionSoutheast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)Southeast Asian Coalition (SEAC)Southeast Asian Community AllianceSoutheast Asian Student Coalition, UC BerkeleyTaiwanese American Citizens LeagueTaulama for TongansTeach For AmericaThai American Bar AssociationThai Community Development CenterThe Asian American Literary ReviewThe Cambodian Society of RITuesday Night Project UCLA Center for EthnoCommunicationsUnhyphenate.MeUnited States Palestinian Community NetworkVietLEADVietnamese Students Association, Baylor UniversityVisual Communications
To read the letter, please click here (or see text of letter below):
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1qp0LV1sWgy-hJaXFOTIZU3I0m62yRH2NAh7hJ8Pft2E/edit?usp=sharing-----AANHPI OPEN LETTER RE AFFIRMATIVE ACTIONMAY 22, 2016
We stand together as organizations across the United States representing Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, in strong support of race sensitive affirmative action policies in higher education.
We believe that equal opportunity is a cherished principle in American society that must be protected, and that our universities should reflect our diverse democracy and expand opportunities for students who have overcome significant barriers. Rather than letting ourselves be divided, we must come together to ensure increased opportunities and success for all students in our nation.
Affirmative action is a holistic approach that promotes diverse educational learning environments essential in our multiracial society. Affirmative action should be firmly upheld in our nation’s institutions of learning, including in Ivy League universities such as Brown, Dartmouth, and Yale.
Affirmative action does not constitute quotas
Unfortunately, there continue to be attempts by some to engage in divisive wedge politics by using misguided, misleading tactics to attack equal opportunity by calling for an end to race sensitive admissions policies at educational institutions such as Brown, Dartmouth, and Yale, as well as Harvard University and University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Opponents of affirmative action have wrongfully and disingenuously equated affirmative action with quotas.The truth is that affirmative action does not constitute quotas.
Affirmative action does not exclude or limit the admission of students from any specific racial or ethnic background. Indeed, the United States Supreme Court long ago prohibited quotas in the higher education admissions process, including banning limits on the admission or enrollment of any racial or ethnic group.
To be clear, we oppose quotas, discrimination, and bias against any racial or ethnic group.
Affirmative action promotes equal opportunity for all
We support affirmative action which, as noted above, does not constitute quotas, discrimination, or bias against Asian Americans.
Currently, affirmative action at universities consists of race sensitive holistic admissions policies. These policies promote equal opportunity in a society where racism still exists and racial barriers continue to unfairly limit educational opportunities for students of color. For example, our schools are more segregated today than they were in the late 1960s. Students of color, particularly African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, and Southeast Asians, are much more likely to attend under-resourced K-12 schools. Implicit bias and stereotyping also further impact and harm the educational learning environments and opportunities of students of color. Universities should consider these factors when reviewing applications for admissions.
All students - including Asian Americans - benefit from the racially and ethnically diverse learning environments fostered by race sensitive holistic admissions processes, including the benefits of increased cross-racial understanding, reduction of stereotyping and isolation of minority students, and training for a diverse workforce and society.
Affirmative action simply takes into account whether an applicant has overcome significant obstacles and institutional barriers, such as racial and ethnic discrimination
Affirmative action simply takes into account whether an applicant has overcome racial and ethnic adversity as one of several factors in a holistic review of an applicant’s qualifications, leadership, and potential. Holistic admissions processes also consider, for example, whether an applicant has endured poverty or is the first in her family to attend college.
Moreover, in the context of college admissions, “merit” cannot be quantified by grade point average, SAT scores, or number of activities alone. Instead, life experiences such as overcoming racial and ethnic adversity are critical factors in a student’s leadership and potential contribution to the university and to our society. In addition, numbers, like grade point averages and standardized test scores, are not colorblind and often reflect and magnify K-12 educational inequities.
Equal opportunity strengthens our democracy
Affirmative action policies help to level the playing field and promote diverse university learning environments that are essential in our multiracial and multicultural society. Our democracy benefits from a diverse and educated populace and workforce.
Those who are truly committed to equal educational opportunity should demonstrate real leadership and reinvest in higher education throughout the nation to expand access, affordability, equity, and student success. Decades of disinvestment in higher education across the country have made college less accessible for all students, especially students of color. We call for unity in standing up for the future of our diverse youth and realizing the promise of equal opportunity for all in the United States.
We also call upon our leaders in higher education institutions to uphold race sensitive affirmative action policies in their admissions processes. Especially at this pivotal time of national discourse about the need to fulfill the promise of our democratic ideals for communities of color, it is imperative that universities carry out their important role of advancing inclusion, equity, and educational opportunities for all students in our multiracial democracy.