October 20, 2010
Kathleen Flores / 202-223-9170
Washington, D.C. – The Asian Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote), a nonpartisan organization focused on voter mobilization and civic participation of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community, is intensifying its efforts to get-out-the vote for midterm elections.
“We are continuing our activities to increase voter turnout in our communities,” said Daphne Kwok, Chair of APIAVote. “We had some success in 2008 when approximately 3.6 million Asian American and Pacific Islanders voted, an increase of 21 percent from 2004. We need to do more to continue this upward trend.”
APIAVote partners with local organizations to promote voter participation and civic engagement. Through leadership training, coalition building, grant making, and organizational development, APIAVote has been successful in mobilizing voters in Hawaii, California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada, Minnesota, Michigan, Illinois, New York, Massachusetts, Virginia, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, Ohio, Texas and Florida, states with significant numbers of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
“We are sponsoring two nonpartisan candidate forums to educate our local candidates community on the issues affecting their families,” said Stephanie Chang, President of the Michigan APIAVote. “We also have our volunteers bringing their cell phones the week before the election to call Asian American voters in Michigan who voted for the first time in 2008, to remind them to vote.”
“We are conducting a door-to-door campaign to encourage Vietnamese voters”, said Quynh Nguyen, Program Manager of the Boat People SOS project in Harris County, Texas. “Many Vietnamese families escaped Vietnam to find freedom. They value democracy and know voting is a special privilege. Now we want to empower them to exercise their rights and not feel intimidated by the process.”
“As part of our get-out-the-vote program, we sponsored a community celebration as well as to honor some Asian Americans who serve as role models in voting by not missing a vote in at least the last five years,” said Gloria T. Caoile, APIAVote Coordinator in Nevada. “We have also been on the phone calling registered voters to remind them early voting is available and to offer them rides to voting sites.”
To volunteer at a local partner organization, contact APIAVote at www.apiavote.org.