ALBANY, NY — Marking a pivotal moment in the equitable distribution of resources, the New York State Fiscal Year 2023-24 budget now includes a groundbreaking commitment of $30 million to Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities. This commitment represents a significant increase of $10 million from last year's allocation and is a major victory for the Filipino and broader AAPI communities.
Assemblymember Steven Raga, the first-ever Filipino American elected official in New York State, stands proudly at the forefront of this achievement. Together with other AAPI State legislators, Assemblymember Raga joins the AAPI Equity Budget Coalition (EBC) in celebrating this historic victory. The EBC, comprising over 100 AAPI community leaders and nonprofits, played a pivotal role in advocating for this increased funding, which will greatly enhance the capacity of Asian-led organizations to better serve their communities, particularly the Filipino community.
"The historic level of funding secured for our AAPI communities in the New York State budget represents a significant step in addressing the systemic discrimination that communities like ours have faced," Assemblymember Raga said. "This commitment not only provides resources to combat the distressing rise in hate crimes and Anti-AAPI violence but also empowers Filipino New Yorkers and our fellow Asian communities to establish robust support systems within their neighborhoods. Although there's more work to be done, we are confidently moving toward a more equitable society."
This funding increase comes in response to the urgent needs of New York's AAPI community, particularly the Filipino community, which has been disproportionately impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. These communities have also been grappling with a disturbing 361% increase in anti-AAPI hate crimes in New York City in 2020 alone.
Assemblymember Raga, alongside other AAPI legislators, continues to fight against the historic underfunding of AAPI communities and neighborhoods. The newly secured funds will be allocated to enhance essential programs within these communities, to build the capacity of local organizations, and to facilitate recovery from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
This financial commitment is a major step toward a future where AAPI communities, particularly the Filipino community, are fully protected and supported. Assemblymember Raga and his fellow AAPI legislators remain committed to building upon this success in the coming years, vowing to correct the disadvantages that have long plagued AAPI communities in New York State.
About the API Equity Budget Coalition (EBC)
The AAPI Equity Budget Coalition (EBC) is a group of over 100 AAPI organizations from across the state, jointly led by the Asian American Federation (AAF) and the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF). The EBC is dedicated to providing community-informed, culturally relevant, and language-accessible services and programs to address a range of issues, including gender-based violence, healthcare, senior and youth programs, housing assistance, legal services, violence intervention, and prevention.