AAPI Highlights: Share Your Immigration Stories!

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AAPI Highlights, April 1, 2013


Welcome to this edition of the White House Initiative on Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (WHIAAPI) Highlights. Watch a video of President Obama at a naturalization ceremony for active duty service members and civilians; learn about an upcoming webinar on the Affordable Care Act and Small Businesses and other agency announcements.


Remarks by the President at a Naturalization Ceremony for Active duty Service Members and Civilians


On March 25th, twenty-eight people representing 26 countries, including 13 service members, took their oath of U.S. citizenship during a naturalization ceremony in the East Room of the White House. In his remarks, President Obama stated, “We are so proud of everybody here.  In each of you, we see the true spirit of America.  And we see a bit of ourselves, too, because most of our stories trace back to moments just like this one.  To an ancestor who - just like the men and women here today - raised their right hand and recited that sacred oath.”  Among those honored in the ceremony were Asau Asanuma from Palau, Mohammed Hossain from Bangledesh, Manish Kappor from India, Hyuntaek Lim from South Korea, Jiang Lin Liu from China, Faafetai Wiki Mamea from America Samoa, Patricia Marie Marcaida from the Philippines and Long Zhang from China. See a complete list of the new U.S. citizens here, read the President’s remarks here, and watch a video of the event here.


Share Your Immigration Stories!


The White House would like to hear your immigration story. As a nation of immigrants, we have a broken immigration system that is hurting both our economy and country. Submit your immigration stories and show your support for a fair, effective and common sense immigration system. Submit your stories here.



WHIAAPI Announcements


Webinar on the Affordable Care Act 101: What the Health Care Law Means for Small Businesses


WHIAAPI invites you to join a web chat on Monday, April 15, from 3:00-4:00 PM ET with a conference call and webinar on the Affordable Care Act 101: What the Health Care Law Means for Small Businesses with the Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Asian and Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF). Learn more here.


If you would like to participate, please find the log-in information below:

Conference Call-in number: 888-989-4620

Participant Passcode: 99665  



Optional Web Chat / Webinar Information:

1. Click Here 

2. If requested, enter your name and email address.
3. If a password is required, enter the meeting password: whitehouseaapi
4. Click "Join".

5. Follow the instructions that appear on your screen.


Note: This call is off the record and not for press purposes.


Visit the WHIAAPI Website


Don’t forget to visit WHIAAPI’s expanded website to learn more about WHIAAPI, view the AAPI Agency Plans and Progress Reports, upcoming events, and sign up to receive e-mail updates.


Agency Spotlight: Department of Health and Human Services - Improving Health Outcomes and Expanding Access to Quality Affordable Health Care


Three years ago, President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law.  Among other things, the law provides an unprecedented opportunity to improve data collection on AAPI communities.  Specifically, as a result of the law, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) established data standards for race and ethnicity that include additional granularity for the Asian and Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander categories.  These data standards will be used in the agency’s national population health surveys, and will help to better understand the health concerns facing the AAPI community.  For instance, last year, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration’s National Survey on Drug Use and Health questionnaire included these new data collection standards for race, and two categories – Guamanian or Chamorro and Samoan – were added for 2013.  View the HHS AAPI Agency Plan here.


Working with Higher Education Institutions Serving Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders


On March 27, Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISIs) gathered in Washington D.C. for the Higher Education Programs Directors Meeting. This gathering provided the opportunity to brief program directors about WHIAAPI’s educational priorities, including plans to increase federal investments to AANAPISIs by providing greater access to resources like grant opportunities; funds to increase staff, faculty, and programming resources; best practices; and federal internships for students. Read about how AANAPISIs help Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders succeed in post-secondary education here.


Social Security Administration Releases Datasets on AAPI Language Preferences


As part of benchmarks in its AAPI agency plan, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has released 12 new datasets on AAPI language preferences for AAPIs seeking SSA services. Read more here.


Agency Announcements


HHS Finalizes Rule Guaranteeing 100% Funding for New Medicaid Beneficiaries


The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) issued a final rule that effective January 1, 2014, the federal government will pay 100 percent of the cost of certain newly eligible adult Medicaid beneficiaries. To read the full text of the final rule and submit comments, click here.


Statement by HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on LGBT Health Awareness Week


In her statement, Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius discusses the initiatives that the Obama administration has undertaken to address the health and well-being of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender community. Secretary Sebelius points out health disparities for the LGBT community and shares examples of how the Administration has worked to ensure LGBT Americans have the same rights and protections as other Americans. Read more here.


CMS Stakeholder & Partner Education Series Webinar


The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services is holding a webinar on Stakeholder & Partner education. Hosted by the Partner Relations Group, Office of Public Engagement, the CMS Stakeholder & Partner Education Series monthly webinar will be held on Tuesday, April 2, 2013 from 2:30 – 3:30 pm ET. This month CMS will feature presentations on State Financial Models for Dually Eligible People, Education Services for Kidney Disease Patients, and CMS Partnership Opportunities. Learn more here 


SBA Announces 2013 National Small Business Week


The U.S. Small Business Administration announced that National Small Business Week will be held June 17th through June 21st. This year’s events will take place all across the country and feature exciting and informative events designed to help small businesses start, grow and succeed. This year’s activities will include forums discussing the small business landscape, business coaching services, matchmaking events as well as networking opportunities and award ceremonies. Learn more here 


Protect Your Personal Information This Tax Season


With risk of tax-related identity theft, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is taking a wide variety of steps to combat identity theft and refund fraud, protect taxpayers and assist victims of identity theft. There are also steps taxpayers can take to protect themselves. When it comes to your taxes, identity theft often starts outside of the tax administration system. Cyber criminals are constantly on the prowl for Social Security Numbers and other personal information they can exploit for fraudulent purposes. Identity thieves may use a taxpayer’s identity to fraudulently file a tax return and claim a refund. The legitimate taxpayer may be unaware that anything has happened until they file their return later in the filing season, and it is discovered that two returns have been filed using the same Social Security Number. Learn more here.


U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank Announces New Manufacturing Council Members


U.S. Deputy Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank announced the appointment of 26 members to the 2013 Manufacturing Council. The Council was established in 2004 and is directed by the Department of Commerce’s International Trade Administration. It helps to ensure that there is regular communication between the U.S. government and the manufacturing sector. Among the new members of the Council are Christie Wong Barret, CEO of the Mac Arthur Corporation, Hiroyuki Fujita President & CEO, Quality Electrodynamics, and Shirish Pareek, Founder & CEO of Hydraulex Global. Read more here 


The U.S. Army Promotes Traumatic Brain Injury Awareness Month


The United States Army has invested over $530 million to improve access to care, quality of care, research, as well as screening and surveillance for Soldiers with Traumatic Brian Injury. Traumatic Brain Injury (a.k.a TBI) is a disruption of brain function resulting from a blow or jolt to the head or a penetrating head injury. Causes of Traumatic Brain Injuries, or TBIs, may include falls, motor vehicle crashes, injuries to the head during sports, and combat-related events such as blasts. The investment will provide a standardized, comprehensive program delivering a continuum of integrated care from point-of-injury to return to duty or transition from active duty. Read more here 


U.S. Labor Department Offers Recommendations for Responding to Aging Workforce


The Department of Labor has provided briefs on recommendations for state and federal policymakers, employers and health care industry leaders on retaining critical talent. One identifies successful strategies, including supportive policies, for retaining aging health care professionals without sacrificing patient care. The other recommends that employers and policymakers adopt early interventions to prevent disability-related job loss by providing workers with assistive technology and other workplace accommodations. Click here for details.


Department of Veteran Affairs Doctors Discovering Life on the Street


A new Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) program is sending teams of health care providers into the streets — literally —to help an invisible army of sick, discouraged Veterans who spend their nights under bridges, on park benches, or on the sidewalk. Often called “street medicine,” the technical term for this growing movement within the Department of Veterans Affairs is ‘H-PACT,’ which stands for Homeless Patient Aligned Care Teams. Currently VA has 31 of these teams across the country that are providing health care and other services to over 5,000 homeless Veterans. Read more here. 


The Impact of Gun Violence: A Conversation with Students


On March 26th, Department of Education Secretary Arne Duncan visited Hart Middle School in the District of Columbia and discussed the issue of gun violence with students. Secretary Duncan’s blog post features a video from the discussion with the students. Read the blog post here 


Grant Opportunities


Education Department Launches 2013 Investing in Innovation Competition


The Department of Education announced the start of the $150 million 2013 Investing in Innovation (i3) grant competition with the release of the program's invitation for pre-applications for the i3 "Development" grant category and the notice of final priorities for the i3 program overall. The announcement incorporates several improvements the Department has made to the grant competition in its efforts to support school districts and nonprofit organizations in partnership with schools pursue innovative ideas that increase student success. Read more here 


Legal Services Corporation: 2014 Competitive Grant Funds Available


The Legal Services Corporation (LSC) is the national organization charged with administering Federal funds provided for civil legal services to low-income people. LSC will issue a Request for Proposals announcing the availability of competitive grant funds and soliciting grant proposals from interested parties who are qualified to provide effective, efficient and high quality civil legal services to eligible clients in the service area(s) of the states and territories identified here. Eligible entities include (1) Non-profit organizations that have as a purpose the provision of legal assistance to eligible clients; (2) private attorneys; (3) groups of private attorneys or law firms; (4) state or local governments; or (5) substate regional planning and coordination agencies composed of sub-state areas and whose governing boards are controlled by locally elected officials. LSC must receive all applicants’ Notice of Intent to Compete (NIC) on or before May 10, 2013, 5:00 p.m., E.T. Read more here