For the first time in twelve years, New Yorkers will have a new mayor in January 2014. Asian Pacific American (APA) New Yorkers are the fastest growing population in New York City and provide myriad assets to the vitality of this city.
To prepare for the new Mayor, Talking Transition is hosting open conversations about the future of New York City. A tent is currently set up on Canal Street and Sixth Avenue for New Yorkers to send to the new Mayor and his transition team a message of how he can improve the city.
On Friday, November 22, Asian American Federation (AAF), Asian Americans for Equality (AAFE), and the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF) held an “Asian Pacific American New Yorkers Count” session as part of Talking Transition. The forum provided an opportunity for APA organizations and community members to come together to share the community’s concerns and priorities, as well as give recommendations to Mayor-Elect de Blasio, his administration, and key decision makers.
After brief introductions by CACF Budget Policy Manager Marissa Martin and AAF Managing Director of Community Services Jo-Ann Yoo, AAFE Director of Policy and Leadership Development Douglas Nam Le moderated a panel of several advocates and community members who presented on issues such as affordable housing, education, and senior citizen services. At the end of the speakers’ presentations, the floor was open for audience members to share their thoughts. In addition, each table had a large sheet of paper with markers so that audience members could write down additional comments and questions for the Mayor-elect.
During her presentation, AAFE Housing & Community Services Program Manager Kayan Chiu emphasized three main affordable housing issues on which the Mayor-elect should focus: 1) continue developing and expanding the scope of the NYC Worst Landlords Watch List; 2) create and preserve 200,000 units of affordable housing in the next 10 years; and 3) reform the Rent Guidelines Board.
Thank you to all of those who organized and attended Asian Pacific American New Yorkers Count!