Olympia City Council celebrates Asian, Native Hawaiian, Pacific Islands American Heritage Month

Councilmember encourages public to learn about ANHPIA


The Olympia City Council proclaimed May 2022 as Asian, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Americans (ANHPIA) Heritage Month, to pay tribute to the contributions of this community group to American history, society and culture.

The proclamation, signed by the city councilmembers and Mayor Cheryl Selby on Tuesday, May 17, recognized ANHPIA community members for their distinguished achievements in science, technology, arts, literature, law and sports.

“They are also war heroes who have defended the country. They are innovative farmers and ranchers. They are small business owners, and healthcare heroes currently on the frontlines of the pandemic,” the proclamation stated.

“Asian, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Americans are a vital constituent of the Olympia community and the Olympia population continues to grow in diversity,” the city stated in the document.

The proclamation also acknowledged that while Olympia celebrates these community groups’ achievements and contributions, they also have their dark experience in America such as structural discrimination, prejudice and injustice; and how they addressed them with their perseverance, resilience and strength against xenophobia and racism.

 “Reflect on what it means to have these folks, these community members as a part of our larger community, what can we do to learn more about their stories?” Huynh said.

Councilmember Yen Huynh encouraged people to self-education and learn the stories of Asian, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islands Americans.

 “You can go to the library, where there are displays specifically Asian-American authors or specific to the Pacific Northwest. Pick up a different book, read something different – whether fiction or nonfiction,” suggested Vietnamese-American Huynh.

Thanh Jeffers, Public Works general services director, and Olympia Police District Acting Lieutenant Ryan Hirotaka were present during the proclamation.

“They identify as ANHPIA. That make a huge impact in our community,” Huynh said as she thanked them for their service.


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