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Census 2020, Japanese internment and banh mi salads: The Sacramento Bee’s AAPI newsletter

This is what the 2020 census means for Californians

The next U.S. census begins in 2020. It will help determine political representation in Congress and in the California Legislature.
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The next U.S. census begins in 2020. It will help determine political representation in Congress and in the California Legislature.

If you care about coverage of California’s Asian American community, please spread the word about our new newsletter. Sign up here to receive this newsletter each week.

Good morning!

It is Thursday, Aug. 15, and this is The Sacramento Bee’s second AAPI weekly newsletter brought to you by yours truly.

Here’s a recap on the AAPI stories I recently covered:

PI community census outreach

With a growing population and language and cultural barriers, the Pacific Islander community in Sacramento is planning to organize its own outreach for Census 2020. The population of Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islanders grew by roughly 90 percent from 2000 to 2015 in Sacramento County, according to the community survey profile published by Sacramento State University.

Fijians stand as the subgroup with the highest growth rate among all Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, with a 396 percent increase in population. There are at least seven languages spoken in the Pacific Islander community in Sacramento, according to ‘Ofa Mann, Sacramento’s Pacific Islander community leader. There will be a booth for officials from California Census 2020 at the Sacramento Aloha Festival on Oct. 5 to get community members registered.

TheodoraYu_Headshot.jpg
Theodora Yu, The Bee’s new cultural reporter for Asian-American issues, Theodora Yu, The Bee’s new cultural reporter for Asian-American issues, will join the newsroom this June. Report for America

In other news, Chinese-American paralegal Brandon Lee was shot four times outside his home in the Philippines on Aug. 6. A San Francisco native, Lee works as an environmental and indigenous rights volunteer in the Philippines, and “relatives and colleagues believe it was a political attack to silence him,” wrote Michael Cabanatuan of the San Francisco Chronicle. He was listed in critical condition.

Julia Flynn Siler wrote an L.A. Times op-ed about how Asian women who fought sex trafficking in the U.S. were written out of history. With the anecdote of Chinese anti-trafficking pioneer Tien Fuh Wu, and using archival material, press accounts and biographies, Siler explores how the “white savior” narrative makes the white experience the central theme, barely mentioning their Asian colleagues who were involved in the work. Wu served as a translator for other survivors of abuse and worked at the rescue home in San Francisco.

PBS is going to broadcast a five-part documentary series called “Asian Americans” in May 2020, during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month. It examines the role of Asian Americans in shaping American history and identity from the first wave of Asian immigrants in the 1850s. Led by a team of Asian American filmmakers, the documentary follows WETA’s previous series “The Jewish Americans,” “The Italian Americans” and “Latino Americans.” PBS says the series will use personal stories to explore the impact of the group on the U.S.

For good stuff in Sacramento, mark Sept. 29 on your calendar for Sacramento’s premiere of “Alternative Facts: The Lies of Executive Order 9066,” a one-hour documentary about the false information and political influences which led to the World War II incarceration of Japanese Americans. The documentary will also examine the current situation of immigrant communities. It will be screened from 2 to 4 p.m. at the California Museum on 1020 O St. in downtown Sacramento, and there will be a panel discussion afterwards with the director and producer Jon Osaki. Tickets can be purchased via Florin JACL.

Also, make sure you don’t miss my colleague Jaimie Ding’s article on the best boba places in Sacramento. They tried 16 drinks in six hours and did a price to product analysis available in table format! Respect.

A side note – My Sister’s Cafe has very nice banh mi salads, and there were plenty of spaces for a leisurely lunch on a busy Monday. It is also great to support My Sister’s House, the nonprofit organization that runs the cafe – their mission is to provide culturally competent services and support to empower Asian and Pacific Islander survivors of domestic violence, sexual assault and human trafficking. 100 percent recommend!

That’s it for this week’s newsletter. For tips, please send to tyu@sacbee.com. Can’t wait to hear from you. Thanks for reading!

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