FAM (Filipino American Museum) presents Gathering the Grassroots 2013: How Do We Build Our Movement?
Following a successful inaugural program in 2012, Gathering the Grassroots returns to New York City on December 8th at Queens Museum. Gathering the Grassroots is a day-long public event celebrating the work of New York’s foremost Asian and Pacific Islander American grassroots organizations. It is an attempt to capture the voices behind the issues concerning APIA working class communities. In organizing this event, FAM provides the forum for these key groups to assemble with the goal of fostering discussion between organizations and across respective missions. Join us for a day of events from a panel examining the recently passed Community Safety Act to a fishbowl-style discussion with all the participating groups. The program will also feature a keynote speaker and musical performance.
SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
2:00pm – Opening Talk: Aquilina Soriano-Versoza, Pilipino Workers Center
2:30pm – Community Safety Act (CSA) Panel
3:30pm – “Fishbowl” discussion with all groups: How Do We Build Our Movement?
5:45pm – Keynote: Jose Antonio Vargas, Journalist and Immigration Activist
6:30pm – Reception and Performance by Deep Foundation & Hydroponiks
ABOUT THE PRESENTERS
FAM is proud to present influential keynote speaker Jose Antonio Vargas, the Pulitzer Prize winning journalist formerly of The Washington Post and currently of The Huffington Post. Born in the Philippines and raised in the United States from the age of 12, he revealed in a 2011 The New York Times Magazine essay his status as an undocumented immigrant. He is the founder of Define American, an organization which aims to elevate the conversation about our country’s immigration system and what it means to be an American.
The opening talk will be given by Aquilina Soriano-Versoza, a founder and current Executive Director of the Pilipino Workers Center (PWC) of Southern California, a nonprofit serving and organizing low-wage Pilipino and Latino immigrants in Los Angeles. She has served as Executive Director of PWC for 12 years and has been working in the Pilipino community for 15 years, both in Los Angeles and in the Philippines. PWC has brought visibility to the realities of Filipino caregivers as a leader in the California Domestic Workers Coalition and the National Domestic Workers Alliance. PWC has become involved with human trafficking issues due to an increasing number of Filipino domestic workers who have been found to be survivors of this
COMMUNITY SAFETY ACT (CSA) Panel
This year’s program will feature a special panel about the Community Safety Act (CSA), a landmark pair of bills creating independent oversight of the NYPD and expanding the definition of “profiling” to include sexual orientation, immigration status, and other factors. The passage of the Community Safety Act showed the power of grassroots mobilization and popular support to overcome a powerful bureaucracy. A sampling of groups from the broad, cross-racial coalition that championed the act will discuss their relation to criminal justice and racial profiling, how they became involved in the campaign, and what lessons they learned for future movement organizing.
CSA Panel Participants:
(Moderator) Luke Aidger – Peoples’ Justice for Community Control & Police Accountability
Roksana Mun – Desis Rising Up and Moving
Ruben An – CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities
Djibril Toure – Malcolm X Grassroots Movement
Representation of participating organizations is inclusive of East Asian, South Asian and Southeast Asian groups. They include:
Asian American Performers Action Coalition (AAPAC)
APICHA Community Health Center
CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities
Chinese Progressive Association (CPA)
Chinese Staff and Workers Association (CSWA)
Coalition for Asian American Children & Families (CACF)
DAMAYAN Migrant Workers Association
Desis Rising Up and Moving (DRUM)
MinKwon Center for Community Action
National Alliance for Filipino Concerns (NAFCON)
New York Committee for Human Rights in the Philippines (NYCHRP)
United We Dream
FAM (Filipino American Museum) is the first museum focused on examining the connection between contemporary Filipino American arts and the roots and traditions of the Philippine diaspora. A start-up committed to presenting cultural programs in stimulating and unprecedented ways, FAM is dedicated to seeking out what it is to be Filipino in America. In the spirit of a diverse people, FAM’s roving programs serve as a fluid, user-generated, inquiry-based space. An untold American story, FAM presents its findings through live performances, exhibits, installations, community forums, online content and otherwise.
Nancy A. Bulalacao-Leung