By Tara Yap
LOS ANGELES — After a video of a racist slur went viral, a Filipino-American group maintains that Filipinos are not stealing American jobs.
“Filipino immigrants play a vital role in building the economy of the United States by providing healthcare and education through employed Filipino doctors, nurses and teachers,” said Aquilina Soriano Versoza, executive director of the Pilipino Workers Center (PWC) in Los Angeles.
“In fact, most Filipinos take jobs that Americans cannot fill such as caregiving and other forms of domestic work. By taking care of the elderly or the children, the Americans are able to go out and have jobs of their own,” Versoza emphasized in a statement sent to The Manila Bulletin.
To recall, the viral video showed an old woman taunting a Filipino-American family at a grocery store in Daly City, which is south of San Francisco.
After making childish talk, the old woman said: “You don’t want me to talk to Philippine?”
“Come on, come on, come on! Look at all the groceries they buy. Steal our food, steal our money, our jobs,” the old woman said.
“So racist. Oh My God,” Jenny Veladera is heard saying.
“We got a family to feed,” Jenny’s husband added.
But the old woman shot back: “So what? Go back to your country.”
“This is our country!” Jenny pointed out.
“You’re lying, you’re lying, you’re lying! Just how you got here,” the old woman responded.
Citing data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the Pew Research Center fact sheet indicated that there is an estimated 3.9-million people have Filipino descent in America as of 2015.
While more racial incidents occurred after President Donald Trump won in 2016, PWC noted that it continues its mission to educate Filipino immigrants in California and elsewhere about their rights.
“We believe that all immigrants have the right to a healthy and dignified quality of life,” added Lolita Lledo, PWC associate director.