Recording of Conversation with Jalena Keane-Lee and her film STANDING ABOVE THE CLOUDS

STANDING ABOVE THE CLOUDS follows Native Hawaiian mother-daughter activists at the forefront of the movement to protect their sacred mountain, Mauna a Wakea, from an eighteen story, Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT). STANDING ABOVE THE CLOUDS won Best Documentary Short at LA Asian Pacific Film Festival, Best Short Film at Melbourne Women in Film Festival, and Special Mention from the Center for Asian American Media.

We had the pleasure to screen this very special film on May 13, 2022. Jalena Keane-Lee is not only the maker of this film, but also comes from a family of generations of Asian American community advocates in Marin County. As a professional filmmaker, she explores intergenerational trauma and healing through an intersectional lens. Named Paper Magazine’s Top 5 Asian creators to know, Jalena’s work subverts traditional narratives about the female, Asian American Pacific Islander experience. Jalena co-founded Breaktide Productions, an all women of color production company, produced commercial series for Nike and Facebook, hosted the national environmental television show Eco Company, and won Tribeca Through Her Lens 2020. She’s also been an AAJA, NeXt Doc and Jacob Burns Film Center Fellow.

Recording of HEALTH ADVOCACY BEHIND THE PAINTED NAILS

Vietnamese immigrants and refugees make up the majority of the workforce in the nail salon industry in California. As part of AAAM’s programming for Asian American Heritage Month, we wanted to uplift the experiences of the Vietnamese American nail salon workers in their resistance and persistence toward reforms in cosmetic product regulations and workplace safety!

On April 28, 2022, nail salon workers Tina Bui and Mong Thu Pham, who gave testimonies before state and local policy-making bodies, spoke about their experiences and answered questions from Marin county residents on live Zoom. Tony Nguyen, the Outreach & Digital Organizing Coordinator from the California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative, shared more about the the state bills the Collaborative has helped pass, and the results of the Collaborative’s recent survey.

Founded in 2005, the California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative is a statewide grassroots organization that addresses health, environmental, reproductive justice, and other social issues faced by its low-income, female, Vietnamese immigrant and refugee workforce. Using a multi-tiered approach that blends community organizing, grassroots policy advocacy, and community-based research, the Collaborative builds power of the nail salon community to develop solutions that benefit the nail salon workforce, their families, small immigrant and refugee owned businesses, and their communities.

Recording of Numbers Matter: Importance of Census Data for Community Advocacy

On Thursday April 21, 7-8pm, we hosted a talk and Q&A with Census Expert and Covid Vaccination Program Manager Sonny Lê! He explained the importance of census data, especially for specific marginalized and invisible Asian American groups, and what data is actually available for advocates to ask for. We recorded the session for those who could not attend the Zoom event live.

Prior to Vaccinate ALL 58, the State of California’s COVID-19 vaccination campaign, Sonny Lê served as the US Census Bureau 2020 Census Partnership Specialist, his third decennial census. In 2000 and 2010, he was the Census Bureau’s Senior Media Specialist representing the states of Alaska, Washington, Idaho, Oregon and the northern half of California. Prior to the 2020 Census, he taught strategic communications in the Non-profit Management Program at San Francisco State University. Sonny came to the US as a refugee from Vietnam in 1979. He has been a media consultant, community organizer, journalist, and a Vietnamese language medical interpreter for over 20 years. 

AAAM 2022 AAPI Heritage Month Events

Thursday April 21, 7-8pm | Numbers Matter: Importance of Census Data for Community Advocacy

Talk and Q&A with Census Expert and Covid Vaccination Program Manager Sonny Lê. See recording HERE.

Thursday April 28, 7pm-8pm | Health Advocacy Behind the Painted Nails

Presentation and Q&A with California Healthy Nail Salon Collaborative. See recording HERE.

Saturday May 7, 6-7:30pm | Chinatown Rising

Film screening and Q&A with father and son filmmaker and activists, Harry and Joshua Chuck. Co-sponsored with AAPI Coalition of the North Bay.

Friday May 13, 7-8pm | Standing Above the Clouds

Film screening and Q&A with filmmaker and indigenous leader Jalena Keane-Lee discusses efforts to protect their sacred land. See recording HERE.

AAAM 2021 Virtual Community Gathering

On November 12, 2021, AAAM had our annual community gathering virtually again. Recordings of different parts of the gathering are here:

We encourage all to donate to San Francisco State University Asian American Research Initiative for the important research Dr. Jeung and other scholars do to provide concrete data and insightful analysis as grounding for AAPI advocacy and civic engagement. We also urge you to become a member of AAAM, or make a general donation to AAAM.

AAPI United Against Hate: AAAM Annual Community Gathering

[Virtual Event]

Friday, November 12, 6-8pm

Register HERE

Join us for a virtual gathering of AAAM members, community friends, and allies! This year, we are aligning with United Against Hate week (Nov. 14-20).  Also, we will have Dr. Russell Jeung from SFSU to share important findings and insights from his research on anti-AAPI attacks during the covid pandemic.  We will also have time for Q&A with Dr. Jeung, as well as a segment for community announcements! 

Special Guest Speaker: Russell Jeung (Co-Founder of Stop AAPI Hate)

Professor of Asian American Studies at San Francisco State University, Dr. Russell Jeung is an author of books and articles on race and religion. He’s written Family Sacrifices: The Worldviews and Ethics of Chinese Americans (Oxford U Press, 2019); Mountain Movers: Student Activism and the Emergence of Asian American Studies (UCLA AAS Center, 2019); and At Home in Exile: Finding Jesus Among My Ancestors and Refugee Neighbors (Zondervan, 2016). 

In March 2020, Dr. Jeung co-founded Stop AAPI Hate with Chinese for Affirmative Action and the Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council. It tracks recent increased discrimination and hate crimes during the pandemic to develop policy interventions and long-term solution to racism.

Stop AAPI Hate was awarded the 2021 Webby Award for “Social Movement of the Year.” TIME magazine named its co-founders, including Dr. Jeung, as among the top 100 Influential Persons of 2021. 

Register HERE

Building Alliances for Advocacy & Accountability

[Virtual Forum]

Time: May 21, 2021, 6pm-7:30pm 
Register for zoom link: https://forms.gle/E3ocmzHCsoC6Ggcz5

Last month, Marin County Board of Supervisors passed a resolution denouncing Anti-Asian hate in the county.   However, that’s only the start!  AAAM is hosting a virtual forum to discuss how we move forward.  We want to identify key challenges, align existing resources, and discuss possible action plans in the following areas: 

  1. School curricula: including lessons and courses on anti-racist and AAPI history and culture K-12 and higher education.
  2. Public education: Anti-racist advocacy and awareness raising in the local community.
  3. Professional Training: For professionals in public services, law enforcement, and healthcare.

We invite community stakeholders, public and social services providers, and other interested community members to join us!  

Rally to Stop Anti-Asian Hate

[Official Press Release, March 26, 2021]

Led by the Asian American Alliance of Marin, a coalition of Asian American and faith-based organizations in North Bay gather together, at noon on March 26 at 4th and City Plaza, to grieve for the lives lost and souls damaged by Anti-Asian attacks.  We stand in solidarity against race-based hate crimes, and social norms and official policies that fail to humanize and recognize Asian Americans as equal members of the society.

The nation-wide rise of Anti-Asian violence since the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in the death of six Asian women in the shootings in Atlanta on March 16, 2021, has shaken the Asian American community.  Asian Americans have long histories as integral residents and workers in the U. S. despite segregation and racism.  Deeply-rooted implicit biases about Asian Americans continue to inform how we are expected to perform and react to racist structures, policies, and interpersonal interactions.  This is why the Asian American community resonates so strongly with the invisibility and fear for safety within the larger Asian community across the nation.  

We seek protections for the Asian American community through institutional commitments from the federal and local governments to recognize current processes and established norms that perpetuate and condone racist dynamics and practices. Institutional commitment to staffing, funding, and providing resources for anti-racist education and training, trauma counseling, professional mediations for interracial conflicts are also sought.  We stand together with BIPOC in the community to demand change that addresses the real issues behind racist attacks. 

Anti-Asian violence must stop now! 

The rally was organized and sponsored by Asian American Alliance of Marin (AAAM), Women’s Rights and Peace of Bay Area (WRAPBA), Vietnamese Association of Marin, Multicultural Center of Marin, Marin Nakayoshi Club, Korean School of Marin County, Korean Presbyterian Church of San Rafael, St. Andrew’s Church of Marin City, Episcopal Church of the Nativity, Filipino Community of Sonoma County, Filipino American Barangay of Sonoma County, Bay Area Rosary of Vallejo, Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS) Sonoma Chapter, Bangka Journey, St. Stephen’s Church, Belvedere, Marin Interfaith Council, and other supportive friends of AAPI.

For more resources to participate in the Stop Anti-Asian Hate movement, please see AAAM’s Resources page.

Live-streamed recording of the rally is accessible on AAAM’s Facebook page.

Rally to Stop Anti-Asian Hate

RSVP on Facebook

Time: Friday March 26, 2021, 12pm-1pm

Place: San Rafael Courthouse Plaza (1000 4th St, San Rafael; the courtyard next to Arizmandi Bakery)

Organized and sponsored by Asian American Alliance of Marin (AAAM), Women’s Rights and Peace of Bay Area (WRAPBA), Vietnamese Association of Marin, Multicultural Center of Marin, Marin Nakayoshi Club, Korean School of Marin County, Korean Presbyterian Church of San Rafael, St. Andrew’s Church of Marin City, Episcopal Church of the Nativity, Filipino Community of Sonoma County, Filipino American Barangay of Sonoma County, Bay Area Rosary of Vallejo, Filipino American National Historical Society (FANHS) Sonoma Chapter, Bangka Journey, St. Stephen’s Church, Belvedere, Marin Interfaith Council, and other supportive friends of AAPI.

This past week was especially difficult for the AAPI folks across the nation, as we observed in anger and sadness, one of the most atrocious anti-Asian hate crimes amongst many in the past year. Please join us in a peaceful demonstration to voice your support! And help us spread the word.

The San Rafael Police Department has been notified. Please RSVP on Facebook so that we can have an approximate number for the sergeant by 3/25!

Marin IJ called to say that an IJ photographer will cover the demonstration on 3/26, and a reporter has been assigned to write a story about our event to be published in the IJ before 3/26.

We will all commit to wearing masks and follow other Covid-19 related public health guidelines.

Each participant please make and bring, if at all possible, a large placard on a stick with your own message. A placard 1 ft by 2 ft or 1.5 ft square, or larger, made of cardboard paper, securely taped to a yard stick will do. Write your message in BIG WORDS so they can be seen. But you can also hold the placard in your hands or come without a placard. Creativity is encouraged, but some simple messages might be:

STOP HATE
AAPI IN GRIEF
SOLIDARITY
JUSTICE FOR ALL
AAPI UNITED
STOP VIOLENCE
AAAM FOR JUSTICE
SAFETY FOR AAPI
AAAM FOR EQUITY

RSVP on Facebook