AAPI Orgs, Activists Join Forces for New Voter Mobilization Initiative and Concerts

By Sameer Rao Oct 03, 2016

A pan-ethnic coalition of over 30 Asian-American community organizations pledged today (October 3) to register 15,000 Asian-American millenials to vote through a series of neighborhood events and concerts. 

The  #IAmAsianAmerican campaign grew in conjunction with major Asian-American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community groups like the voter-focused APIAVote and 18MillionRising.org, as well as arts advocacy organizations like Kollaboration.

Noting the historic barriers against—and marginalization of—Asian-American communities in the political process, the campaign (#IAAA for short) aims to register new voters via free concerts being held in four cities on October 16. The concerts and affiliated events will take place in New York City, Chicago, Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles—all cities with large Asian-American populations. #IAAA and partner organizations will organizie voter registration events in the days before the respective concerts, while the flagship event in L.A. will feature a celebrity-filled red carpet and will be streamable during coordinated events across the country. 

"Our inaugural network of entrepreneurs, local businesses, artists and advocates demonstrates the power of our community and how our voices matter and votes count," #IAAA executive director Uyen Tieu said in a press release sent to Colorlines.

"This was a simple and easy decision for us to join the movement," says Eddie Song, founder of New York City’s Korilla BBQ in the same release. "What’s easier than signing up to register while you wait for your food?" Song, like other participating vendors and partners in all four cities, will turn his restaurant and food trucks into voter registrations hubs leading up to the concerts.

Partner organizations include the National Association of Asian American Professionals, Korean American Coalition, Chinese Mutual AidNational Organization for Vietnamese American LeadershipIndo-American CenterAngryAsianMan, AAPIData.com and various local businesses like Song’s. 

Visit #IAAA’s website to register to vote and learn more about the shows; an RSVP is required for the flagship event.