AAPI COMMISSION ISSUES REPORT

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CONGRESSMAN ENI F.H. FALEOMAVAEGA American Samoa U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C.

NEWS RELEASE

January 19, 2001

Congressman Eni Faleomavaega today applauded the efforts of the President's Advisory Commission on Asian and Pacific Islanders and the submission of its first report to the President of the United States.

Titled "A People Looking Forward," the report highlights a number of critical issues confronting Asians and Pacific Islanders in the United States and makes recommendations on how to address them. Copies of the report are available on the Internet at: http://www.aapi.gov/.

"This is an historic period in the history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in our nation and the release of the Commission's report is a critical first step in getting recognized and to begin the process of addressing the many issues concerning our communities," Congressman Faleomavaega said.

The 15 member Commission along with the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders were established last Summer by President Clinton under Executive Order 13125. The goal is to improve the quality of life of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders by increasing their participation in federal government programs where they may be underserved.

Among those appointed by President Clinton to the Commission is Jacinta Titialii Abbott, a native American Samoan, who is Vice President and Assistant General Counsel for one of the largest investor owned health care management companies in the nation.

"I want to commend the Commissioners for their tremendous service to our country and especially to the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities by dedicating their time and expertise to this important effort.

The tremendous challenge they faced due to the lack of available information and the abridged timeframe - collecting and analyzing the data and deliver a report in less than six months was an incredible task and deserves much praise," Congressman Faleomavaega said. "I am especially pleased with the excellent work of Jacinta Titiali'i Abbott in representing the concerns and interest of our Samoan community on the Commission."

In announcing the release of its interim report during a ceremony at the White House and a reception on Capitol Hill, the Commission calls on the President and the Nation for increased cultural competency and protection of civil rights for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The Commission also urges the new administration to continue the forward momentum.

"I sincerely hope that the incoming administration will agree with us on the value of this Commission and the need to continue moving forward," Congressman Faleomavaega said. "I urge our communities to make use of this report and continue to work with the government agencies both nationally and locally to effect positive changes as desired by the President's Executive Order 13125."

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