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Harris highlights AANHPI representation in White House forum

Don Tagala | TFC News New York

Posted at May 12 2023 09:16 PM

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Members of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) community trooped to Washington, D.C. to attend a forum sponsored by the White House.

The May 3 forum was part of the celebration of the AANHPI Heritage Month in the U.S.

The Biden-Harris administration has touted itself as the most diverse government in America's history. Some 14% in the administration identify as part of the AANHPI, which includes Filipino-Americans.

Highlighting the forum was Vice President Kamala Harris, who is of South Asian descent. Harris stressed before attendees the importance of representation.

"What we are seeing with more recent generations of the kids who come from immigrant families is a recognition that if we are to be fully a part of, if we are to be fully actualized, we should not be excluded from any system," she said.

Harris also scored the supposed culture war in the U.S. and urged Americans to push back on threats to democracy.

"There are attempts, right before our eyes, to roll back all of the hard-won freedoms we have collectively fought for," she added. "This is a time for people to stand and to speak out."

Among the hundreds of attendees at the Lisner Auditorium were Filipino-Americans. Maria Javier, chief information office of Public Wise, welcomed Harris' remarks.

"It's really nice to see somebody who is reflective of us up there in a leadership position," she said. "The fact that the Biden administration is made up of 14 percent of AANHPI, that's a big deal."