Biden declares May as Asian-Pacific Heritage Month

Published May 4, 2021, 9:49 AM

by Jaleen Ramos

 May is Asian-American and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander (AANHPI) Heritage Month.

US President Joe Biden (Photo by Olivier DOULIERY / AFP)

US President Joe Biden issued a proclamation on Friday, April 30, recognizing the history and achievements of Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders across the states. 

The President said the country honors the leadership, resilience, and courage shown by the AANHPI communities, and recommits to the struggle for AANHPI equity.

“From laying railroad tracks, tilling fields, and starting businesses, to caring for our loved ones and honorably serving our Nation in uniform, AANHPI communities are deeply rooted in the history of the United States,” the proclamation read.

“We also celebrate and honor the invaluable contributions the AANHPI communities have made to our Nation’s culture and the arts, law, science and technology, sports and public service — including the courageous AANHPIs who have served on the front lines of the COVID-19 pandemic as health care providers, first responders, teachers, and other essential workers,” the statement added.

The White House also recognized Vice President Kamala Harris for her achievements and “for setting an example for young people to follow, including those from the AANHPI communities and AANHPI women.”

Biden also highlighted the “heightened fear” in the Asian American community amid the increasing rates of anti-Asian harassment and violence during the coronavirus pandemic.

“Our Nation continues to grieve the senseless killings of six women of Asian descent in Atlanta, and the unconscionable acts of violence victimizing our beloved Asian American seniors in cities across the country,” the proclamation read.

Nearly 3,800 hate crime incidents were reported against Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders in 50 states in the US over the last year, according to Stop AAPI Hate.

Biden and Harris hope to “advance equity, root out racial injustices in our Federal institutions, and finally deliver the promise of America for all Americans.”

“I urge my fellow Americans to join us this month in celebrating AANHPI history, people, and cultures.”

The US Embassy in the Philippines assured that it will continue to stand shoulder to shoulder with AANHPI communities in condemning, denouncing, and preventing acts of violence.

It added that it will continue to look for opportunities to heal together and fight against racism and xenophobia.