The team at the California Budget & Policy Center, a nonpartisan, data-driven organization with a focus on evaluating public policies and their effect on Californians with low and middle incomes, released the following statement in solidarity with Asian American and Pacific Islander communities across California and the nation.
Our hearts remain heavy as hate and violence threaten the health, safety, and well-being of our Asian and Asian American colleagues, family members, friends, and neighbors. We mourn the loss of lives in Atlanta, California, and across the nation.
As racist and misogynistic violence robbed the lives of Asian women in Atlanta last week, and in California we see an escalation of brutal attacks on Asians and Asian Americans, we cannot forget that racism and violence against people from Asia and their descendants is woven into the fabric of our nation and California’s history. Asian immigrants built California’s post-Gold Rush economy, created railways that linked the state to the rest of the country, and developed rich agricultural farms that have made California a national leader.
And still today, policies, practices, and actions rooted in white supremacy breed terror against Asians, dehumanization of Asian Americans, and erasure of the unique experiences of the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities.
In our commitment to being an anti-racist organization, the Budget Center recognizes our responsibility to push for policy action that can improve the lives of Californians’ economic and social needs — and to better understand the unique needs and investments to achieve health and prosperity for Asian Californians, Black Californians, Latinx Californians, American Indians, and immigrant families. We see the gaps in information and additional learning needed to support members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community who speak more than 40 languages and encompass 50 races and ethnicities. And we stand in solidarity with the many statewide and community organizations that have long demanded greater representation and understanding of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities as they seek equity, justice, and inclusion.
We believe California can be a place where everyone can fully participate in the state’s economic, social, and political life, and this is especially critical for Asian, Black, Latinx, American Indian, and immigrant families who have built this state’s vast wealth. To achieve this, we must come together to root out structural racism and white supremacy in our public policies and practices, and invest in the people who make this state the place we all value and call home.