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Weekly Digest
July 7, 2020


COVID-19 and JACL operations and resources

JACL's physical offices remain closed. Staff continue to do the work of the organization remotely.  Please direct all phone calls to our Washington, D.C. Office at (202) 223-1240 and we will get back to you as quickly as possible. Otherwise, we will all be available via email. All staff emails can be found HERE. You can also check our website, jacl.org, for updates and COVID-19 resources. You can view our resources page here. 

Stay safe everyone and we hope to see you all in person again soon. 

- JACL National Staff


Berkeley JACL Statement on Laney Professor who Asked Student to Change their Name

The Berkeley JACL stands with Phuc Bui Diem Nguyen in her complaint against Professor Matthew Hubbard of Laney College, who asked her to change her Vietnamese birth name because he said it was offensive "in my language." Professor Hubbard’s actions in requesting Phuc Bui to “anglicize” her name were unacceptable, insensitive, and racist. Every person should feel included and welcome in this beautifully diverse nation, and especially in a city as diverse as Oakland. Our diversity and different intersecting identities should be celebrated, not taunted or changed for the convenience of others. 


JACL NY/SC Digital Storytelling Contest

How does the past influence your present?: NY/SC Digital Storytelling Competition 

This summer, the Japanese American Citizens League (JACL) National Youth/Student Council (NY/SC) is excited to introduce our Digital Storytelling competition. 

We know that storytelling has always been important, particularly for Japanese and Asian Americans. Much of our community history is recorded orally or passed down through personal archives, and in the present moment it is especially important that we take note of our experiences, memories, thoughts, and feelings. This competition is designed to uplift young JACL voices and use our stories, whether they be present or historical, to build connections with one another in times of physical distance. 

Using one of five mediums--journalistic-style essay, visual art, video presentation, poetry, or creative writing--we ask youth participants to send in their stories, with the theme of How does the past influence your present? 

We encourage entrants to be creative in their approach to the theme. How has the past--be it your personal, familial, national, or other histories--shaped your current experience? How has it formed your identity or perception of self? How will it continue to shape your future? 

You may interpret the prompt as freely as you’d like. In reviewing submissions, members of the National Youth/ Student Council will be evaluating based on the following attributes:

  • Creativity

    • Does the submission exhibit an imaginative or innovative way of thinking?

  • Adherence to the Theme

    • Does the submission bridge elements of the past with the present in a clear and coherent manner?

  • Clarity of Story

    • Is the storyline of the submission clear and easy to understand? 

  • Quality of Submission  

    • Does the artist avail of all of their resources to produce their story?

The competition submission form can be found at nysc.jacl.org and will open June 28th, running until August 15th. The competition is open to all youth ages 13-30, no prior experience necessary. The top two entries will receive:

  • Recognition in the Pacific Citizen, our JACL newsletter; 

  • Publication online, both on the National Youth/Student Council site and the JACL National site;

  • An expenses-covered opportunity to attend the 2021 JACL National Convention in Las Vegas to present their work. 

If you have any questions, please contact NY/SC Youth Representative Mieko Kuramoto at mkuramoto@jacl.org . We look forward to seeing your submissions!


Join Us in Support of H.R. 40

JACL Executive Director, David Inoue, discusses JACL’s support of H.R. 40. H.R. 40 would create a commission to examine the institution of slavery, its legacy, and make recommendations to Congress for reparations, beginning a process of repairing and restoring after centuries of enslavement. Click the image above to watch the full video statement. 


Tadaima Week 4 Programming and Amache Special Resource Study

The National Park Service (NPS) Amache Special Resource Study (SRS) team is excited to announce that we have been invited to conduct three virtual public meetings in partnership with TADAIMA! A Community Virtual Pilgrimage, an online event hosted on the Japanese American Memorial Pilgrimages (JAMP) organization website. We are honored to be included in the virtual pilgrimage and look forward to engaging with the public on the special resource study that is underway. Each of the three 2-hour meetings will follow the same format, beginning with a short presentation to introduce the Amache special resource study process, followed by smaller breakout groups to gather thoughts and information on the sites’ potential for inclusion in the NPS system. Breakout group discussions will center on questions listed in the attached newsletter. The newsletter also provides background information on the special resource study process and possible outcomes.

The meetings will be held during the following dates and times:

  • Thursday, July 16th:      5:00 pm – 7:00 pm PDT (6:00 pm – 8:00 pm MDT)
  • Saturday, July 25th:       12:00 pm – 2:00 pm PDT (1:00 pm – 3:00 pm MDT)
  • Saturday, August 1st:    12:00 pm – 2:00 pm  PDT (1:00 pm – 3:00 pm MDT)


It is possible to sign up for schedule notifications on the JAMP website to receive details about joining one of the meetings as this information becomes available: https://www.jampilgrimages.com/vpregistration 

Input from participants will be captured for the public record. If you would like to provide comments outside of the meetings you may do so by accessing the following site: https://parkplanning.nps.gov/Amache





JACL Organizational Sign Ons 


JACL Hopeful Upon Passage of the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2020

Last week the House of Representatives passed the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act of 2020. Thus far it is the most comprehensive effort to reform and reshape a justice system that has consistently failed. To date, there has been no justice for the Black lives lost to brutal and inhumane police tactics. This is why major systemic changes must be undertaken and this legislation is a step in the right direction. 


APIAVote Presidential Townhall Recording

From APIAVote: "Since 2008, the Presidential Town Hall has served as a forum for AAPIs to push for AAPI issues to be addressed and on the radar of campaigns and the media. In giving presidential candidates a space to directly address AAPI community members, leaders, and organizers, the town hall has become one of the few spaces geared specifically for candidates to speak directly to AAPIs, about AAPIs. In 24 hours, the event reached 800,000+ views as former Vice President Joe Biden and Trump Surrogate and former Guam governor Eddie Baza Calvo addressed issues like healthcare, diversity and immigration to the AAPI community."


Hate Crime Resources 

We've updated our Hate Crimes Page to include more information and reporting options for members of the community as hate crimes increase as a result of COVID-19. You can visit the updated page here. 


Complete the 2020 Census Now!

Despite the COVID-19 epidemic, you can still fill out your 2020 Census online and over the phone! Click the link below to visit the Census website to start! Census enumirators will start visiting houses that haven't filled it out in August, so make sure you fill it out today!


Follow JACL on:


JACL Headquarters
1765 Sutter Street
San Francisco, California 94115
(415) 921-5225 | mbr@jacl.org

JACL DC Office
1629 K Street NW, Suite 400
Washington, D.C. 20006
(202) 223-1240 | policy@jacl.org

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