National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum strongly opposes RAISE Act

For Immediate Release
August 3, 2017
Contact: Alexa Mauzy, Camino PR 212.255.2575 / alexa@caminopr.com

WASHINGTON, D.C. — On August 2, 2017, President Donald Trump announced his support for Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR) and David Perdue (R-GA) updated “Reforming American Immigration for A Strong Economy” (RAISE) Act. The RAISE Act is an anti-immigrant piece of legislation intended to reduce the rate of legal immigration and bar legal immigrants from accessing the same social safety net which other Americans use. National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) Executive Director Sung Yeon Choimorrow issued the following statement in response:

“Once again, Trump’s political agenda has proven to run contrary to this nation’s stated ideals. In the United States of America, all people are created equal—regardless of race or national origin. At NAPAWF, we still believe this is true. Regardless of your country of origin, what “skills” you have to offer, or what papers you carry, you deserve to be safe with your family and friends in a nation that considers you equal to anyone else.

“The RAISE Act exists in opposition to every one of these ideals. Instead of holding people to be equal, this discriminatory legislation would divide immigrants based on false ideas of “merit.” The so-called “merit system” proposed by Republican Senators and supported by Trump is a complete distortion of what “merit” means. Under the mask of “fixing the economy,” the RAISE Act would destroy both the economy and Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) families.

“Despite laboring under massive wage gaps and hostile working conditions, AAPI women and gender nonconforming immigrants participate in the labor force at rates greater than those of the total population of women. The RAISE Act would drive AAPI women and gender nonconforming people out of the U.S. economy, and end family reunification policies that allow us to create homes in the U.S. Most AAPI immigrants come to the U.S. through the family-based immigration system. Ending this system would strain the very workforce Trump’s policies falsely claim to protect, and drive AAPI families apart. It is clear that the RAISE Act is not about protecting and supporting immigrant workers, but about dividing and diminishing us.

“The RAISE Act is another lie from the Trump administration meant to blame immigrants and demean people of color. While the facts show that immigrants are already necessary and contributing members of American society, Trump’s agenda makes it clear that immigrants don’t matter to his administration. Though xenophobia and racism are guiding the White House’s policy, we call upon Congress to choose a better path—a path which rejects bigotry, and instead creates prosperity and growth for all of our families. NAPAWF is proud to reject the Trump administration’s bigotry and fight for vibrant and strong immigrant communities no matter what.”

###

The National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF): NAPAWF is the only multi-issue, progressive, community organizing and policy advocacy organization for Asian American and Pacific Islander women and girls in the U.S. NAPAWF’s mission is to build a movement to advance social justice and human rights for Asian American & Pacific Islander (AAPI) women and girls.