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WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Island Leaders Applaud House Passage of Build Back Better Act

November 19, 2021

Following the House passage of the Build Back Better Act, Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Island leaders applauded how the historic legislation will cut costs for elder and child care, expand access to health care, invest in community health centers and affordable housing units, and support Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions. Build Back better will also lower costs, create good-paying, union jobs, and deal everybody into the economy.

As Nobel Prize-winning economists and independent ratings agencies have confirmed, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and Build Back Better Act are fully paid for, will reduce the deficit, and ease inflationary pressures by making the wealthiest individuals and corporations pay their fair share and stopping them from cheating on their tax bills.

Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander leaders from across the country are applauding the passage of the historic legislation through the House and call on the Senate to take urgent action so President Biden can sign it into law and ensure we can build back better.

See below for what they are saying:

Sung Yeon Choimorrow, Executive Director, National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum (NAPAWF): "Today, we thank Congress for voting on the Build Back Better Act, which will transform the lives of millions of families across America, especially working mothers. This is a step forward for the countless number of Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) families living in multigenerational, immigrant households, providing care and economic support to their children, elderly parents and extended family members. AAPI women are overrepresented in the low wage workforce, struggling to make ends meet. [Statement, 11/19/21]

Juliet K. Choi, President and CEO, Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF): "This is a once in a lifetime investment towards realizing health equity for so many of our families and loved ones. Build Back Better would decrease the number of uninsured AA NH/PI individuals by reducing the cost of coverage on the ACA exchanges, and it would expand Medicare hearing coverage for more than 2.3 million AA NH/PI people on Medicare. Additionally, this legislation will address the Medicaid coverage gap for AA NH/PI populations living in states that have not expanded eligibility under the ACA as well as expand Medicaid coverage for home care services for seniors and people with disabilities." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Jeffrey B. Caballero, Executive Director, Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO): "AAPCHO applauds the House of Representatives for passing the Build Back Better Act. This historic legislation will help improve health equity and access for many, including Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders throughout the country and in the U.S. territories. We commend its important investments to strengthen community health centers and the public health workforce, and commitments to address affordable housing, childcare, paid leave, public education, clean energy, and other longstanding inequities. AAPCHO and our member community health centers urge the Senate to swiftly pass the Build Back Better Act. We look forward to it being signed into law." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Quyen Dinh, Executive Director, Southeast Asia Resource Action Center: "The passage of this groundbreaking reconciliation bill is an important step forward in supporting equitable health and education for Southeast Asian Americans. We are proud of the provisions that support our elders' access to care, our students' access to higher education, and our educators' access to resources and training to support their development. [Statement, 11/19/21]

Asian/Pacific Islander American Chamber of Commerce and Entrepreneurship (National ACE): "The Build Back Better Act builds on the investments made through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act that was signed into law earlier this week. National ACE applauds the continued efforts of Congress and the Biden-Harris Administration to help the economy recover from the COVID-19 pandemic and build an economy that works for all Americans. We look forward to working with Congress over the coming weeks to ensure the bill continues to put small business first. We call on the Senate to pass this bill as quickly as possible and send it to the President's desk." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Bob Sakaniwa, Senior Policy Advisor, Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote): "We laud the House of Representatives for successfully passing the historic Build Back Better Act today, a $1.75 trillion dollar reconciliation package that makes landmark investments in child care, healthcare, affordable housing, public education, clean energy, and more. We thank the efforts of those who were involved in the creation of this legislation, and advocated for its final passage. The Build Back Better Act will directly improve the lives of Asian and Pacific Islanders across the United States, from major cities like New York City to small cities like Springdale, Arkansas." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Madalene Xuan-Trang Mielke, President and CEO, Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS): "We are thrilled that the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act, an extraordinary piece of legislation that will significantly benefit our Asian American, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community. Many segments of the bill invest in and provide relief to our families and communities that are desperately needed, especially with COVID-19 still being a major concern. We urge the Senate to quickly pass the bill." [Statement, 11/19/21]

National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA): "NCAPA applauds the Members of Congress who moved this bill forward to make key investments in AANHPI communities, such as AANAPISIs, community health centers, affordable housing units, free child care, and combating pollution." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Asian Americans Advancing Justice (AAJC): "Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act, which, among other provisions, would recapture more than 500,000 previously unused visas. Due to government delays and backlogs, many Asian American families and immigrants have been separated from their families for years, sometimes decades. From here, the legislation will be considered and amended by the Senate and potentially passed via reconciliation." [Statement, 11/19/21]

Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA): "This morning, The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Build Back Better Act that will bring us closer to a more fair and just economy for workers and families. APALA supports this bill and will continue organizing for the key provisions that our communities still need. Building on the President's framework, this bill prioritizes increasing access to child tax credit, paid family and medical leave, universal pre-k, stable housing, visas to reunite families, clean jobs that are good for workers and the environment, and so much more that we have been fighting for." [Statement, 11/19/21]

AAPI Victory Alliance: "#BuildBackBetter is a historic investment that'll improve the lives of #AAPI families, providing access to childcare, affordable housing & nutrition. And with critical investments to combat #climatechange, we'll protect the homes of NHPIs. We urge the Senate to pass this ASAP. [Tweet, 11/19/21]

OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates: "BREAKING: The Build Back Better Act has passed the House. This landmark bill would make historic investments in our communities and support countless AAPI families across the country. We urge the Senate to pass it without delay." [Tweet, 11/19/21]

Joseph R. Biden, WHAT THEY ARE SAYING: Asian American and Native Hawaiian and Pacific Island Leaders Applaud House Passage of Build Back Better Act Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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