CAPAC Chair Praises AAPI Inclusion on Bipartisan House Select Committee on the Coronavirus

Apr 29, 2020 Issues: Other Issues

WASHINGTON— Today, Speaker Nancy Pelosi announced the House Democrats appointed to serve on the bipartisan House Select Committee on the Coronavirus Crisis, including Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) Executive Member and Freshman Representative Andy Kim (NJ-03). CAPAC Chair Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement:

“I am thrilled to congratulate Andy Kim on his appointment to the House Select Committee on the Coronavirus. Andy is not only a distinguished public servant, he is also a strong voice for the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community which has historically not had a seat at the table. And there are few tables as important to be at than this one right now. In order to address the coronavirus pandemic, Congress has already passed four relief bills that provide trillions in aid to workers, families and businesses to help get through this crisis. But that much money is ripe for fraud or waste without proper oversight, which this committee will provide, giving the American people confidence that their taxpayer dollars will be well spent.

“But it’s not just about avoiding waste and abuse. We also need to make sure this money gets where it is needed and intended. That includes getting to communities of color who are bearing a disproportionate cost of this crisis, while still struggling to get the resources they deserve. For instance, in my home state of California, AAPIs are 15% of the population, but account for 17% of COVID-19 cases. And these disparities are even worse for the Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander community, who are experiencing some of the highest COVID-19 infection and mortality rates in several states.

“Greater oversight is also needed to ensure that funds are reaching small businesses that are most in need. Even though immigrants, of which AAPIs are the fastest growing demographic, are more likely to start a business, minority communities have had a harder time accessing capital and other relief funding. This is why it is so important to have an AAPI voice on this committee who can ensure that AAPI needs and experiences are represented as well. And I am even more pleased that four other members of CAPAC have been appointed to this committee as well. Reps. Maxine Waters, Nydia Velazquez, Carolyn Maloney, and Jamie Raskin all have significant AAPI populations in their districts and have been leaders in fighting for all Americans.

“This is the most diverse Congress in history, reflecting our country better than ever before. And I’m so pleased that diversity is being represented in the most significant legislative discussions as well.”