CAPAC Celebrates Asian Pacific American Heritage Month
Washington, D.C.–Rep. Judy Chu (CA-32), Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), introduced H. Res. 621 to commemorate Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. The resolution was co-sponsored by 50 additional Members of Congress, including every House Member of the Caucus.
CAPAC members also released statements on Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. Remarked Congresswoman Chu, CAPAC Chair: “The history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders is inextricably tied to the American story. Our nation is a nation of immigrants, and the contributions of each successive generation are woven into the fabric of our daily lives.”
She added: “As we celebrate the twentieth APA Heritage Month this May, I urge all Americans to reflect on the milestones that have been part of the Asian American and Pacific Islander history in America. Moments like the completion of the transcontinental railroad to the tech and internet boom at the end of the 20th Century had profound impacts on our nation’s history.”
Congressman Mike Honda (CA-15), CAPAC Chair Emeritus urged everyone to reflect on this year’s theme of “Striving for Excellence in Leadership, Diversity, and Inclusion,” noting the community has many accomplishments to celebrate.
He stressed: “We’ve seen this being demonstrated through the growing number of AAPI federal judges and elected officials at the local, state, and national level; the benefits of creating access to health care for millions of AAPIs, and even the rise of AAPI celebrities, entertainers, and artists in the mainstream media.”
Senator Daniel K. Akaka (HI) noted: “This is a month when we should celebrate our roots and traditions, and share our cultures with all Americans. The United States is a great country, strengthened by our contributions.”
May is officially designated as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month by section 102 of title 36, United States Code. The observance originally began as Asian/Pacific American Heritage Week, which was established through a joint Congressional resolution in 1978. In 1992, the celebration was officially extended to a month.
The month of May was chosen due to two important milestones in Asian/Pacific American history. On May 7, 1843, the first Japanese immigrants arrived in the U.S. States. On May 10, 1869, the first transcontinental railroad was completed with substantial contributions from Chinese immigrant workers.