WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 15, 2013) – The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA), a coalition of 30 national Asian Pacific American organizations, urges the prompt confirmation of Tom Perez as the next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Labor.
“NCAPA supports the confirmation of Mr. Perez, who in his tenure as the Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice, has championed voter protection, access to educational equity, and prosecution of hate crimes,” said Deepa Iyer, chair of NCAPA and executive director of South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT). “Mr. Perez is an advocate of civil rights and justice for all communities.”
Nine NCAPA member groups were among 82 national organizations that signed onto to a letter issued Monday by the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights that urged Senators to confirm Perez. The NCAPA member groups were: Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF); Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA); Asian American Justice Center (AAJC), member of Asian American Center for Advancing Justice; Japanese American Citizens League (JACL); National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (National CAPACD); National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC); Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF); South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT), and Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC).
“Mr. Perez’s dedication and experience as a public servant demonstrates his ability to lead the Department of Labor during a time when our economy and our politics call for a stronger advocate for working families,” said Gregory Cendana, executive director of Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) and AFL-CIO. “Working families will benefit from Perez’s leadership and we urge the Senate to approve his appointment.”
As the Assistant Attorney General for the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, Mr. Perez increased enforcement of key civil rights laws on voting rights, disability rights and educational equity. When he was Secretary of Maryland’s Department of Labor, Mr. Perez re-prioritized agency operations to investigate and prosecute con-artists who targeted homeowners though a series of foreclosure prevention schemes, and made structural reforms to Maryland’s workforce development infrastructure to prepare state residents who were most vulnerable to job losses the chance for a speedier return to work.
“Throughout his career as a civil rights leader, Mr. Perez has built a track record that shows his understanding of the diversity in our communities and his long standing commitment to the needs and priorities of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders,” said Lisa Hasegawa, executive director of National CAPACD. “Over the years, we have worked closely with Mr. Perez to address language access, fair lending and employment discrimination issues in AAPI communities as a part of ensuring equal opportunities for all Americans. We ask the Senate to confirm Mr. Perez without delay.”
The National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA), founded in 1996, is a coalition of thirty national Asian Pacific American organizations. Based in Washington D.C, NCAPA serves to represent the interests of the Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AA & NHPI) community and to provide a national.
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