The Hmong community is an integral part of the Southeast Asian American refugee legacy but has recently been misclassified as ‘East Asian’ rather than ‘Southeast Asian’ by the US Census Bureau. This mistake erases our Hmong community’s identity and conceals the inequities we experience as refugees from Southeast Asia. Hmong voices and stories matter and the US Census Bureau must honor the Hmong community’s self-identification as Southeast Asian Americans. We’re mobilizing our communities to tell the US Census Bureau that it must correct its mistake. Sign our petition today and share it widely.
AANHPI Data Disaggregation
SEARAC is committed to push federal, state, and local agencies to collect and report data that allows Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders to be seen. Our unique stories, experiences, cultures, and heritage matter! We will be launching a new data disaggregation campaign in 2022 and look forward to sharing more information soon.
Changing the Narrative Around Southeast Asian American Deportation
In 2021, SEARAC proudly launched a series of deportation-focused public service announcements (PSAs) featuring the stories of five impacted Southeast Asian American (SEAA) community members and their families. This video series is designed not only to educate the broader Southeast Asian community on the impact of deportations on our families and communities but also to build public support for the need to end deportations.
Ending Visa Sanctions Against Southeast Asian Countries
In February 2022, the Biden Administration announced that it would be lifting visa sanctions against Laos, allowing some Southeast Asian American families to reunit. However, there are still effectively immigration bans in effect from the Trump Administration against other countries, including Burma, Burundi, Cambodia, and Eritrea. These sanctions keep war torn families apart and perpetuate violence against refugees and immigrants. SEARAC has joined our partners at the Southeast Asian Deportation Defense Network to launch a petition demanding that President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas lift these sanctions and allow Southeast Asian American families to reunite.
Mental Health Support for Southeast Asian Americans in California
In 2019, SEARAC launched a policy brief, “The Right to Heal: Southeast Asian American Mental Health in California,” offering insights and recommendations for meeting the mental health needs of SEAA communities in California and across the country. This report builds off of a 2019 survey period during which more than 250 SEAAs across California shared their mental health needs, the challenges they faced in accessing culturally and linguistically appropriate care, and their vision for the mental health system in California.
Caregiving for Older Adults
SEARAC, in partnership with the Diverse Elders Coalition, is engaged in a multi-year research and education program designed to better understand and meet the needs of Southeast Asian American family caregivers. Through a series of surveys and focus groups, we have developed training tools and resources designed to help healthcare providers better understand the experiences of Southeast Asian Americans who are providing support to a friend or loved one.
All Students Count
In 2014, SEARAC created the national All Students Count campaign with our local and national partners to push federal, state, and local agencies to collect and report data broken down by Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander ethnic groups. Propelled by this advocacy campaign, Washington state, Minnesota, and Rhode Island recently passed data disaggregation laws and the U.S. Department of Education created the first-ever grant program to help interested states collect disaggregated data of Asian American and Pacific Islander students. Washington, Minnesota, and Rhode Island state education agencies are also current grantees of this federal program.
Protect the ACA
SEARAC’s 2017 Southeast Asian Americans Protect the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid Expansion comment card campaign mobilized over 350 community members to protect access to affordable healthcare. The ACA and Medicaid expansion reduced uninsured rates in the community by half between 2011 and 2015. Attacks on the ACA and Medicaid are attacks on affordable and accessible healthcare for the SEAA community. We are proud of our work to ensure that healthcare access remained available to all, despite multiple attempts to repeal and replace the law.