FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
JUNE 20, 2016
Contact: Mary Tablante;
National Council of Asian Pacific Americans Says "Enough," Urges Congress to Pass Stronger Gun Control Measures
Following last week's hate crime in Orlando--the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history--the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA) and more than 20 of its member organizations* are calling on Congress to pass commonsense measures to help prevent gun violence.
"Less than a year passed between the hate crime at Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, South Carolina that killed nine African American men and women and the hate crime at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida that killed 49 people, almost all of whom were LGBTQ and many were Latinx," said NCAPA National Director Christopher Kang. "And in between these two tragedies, 33,000 Americans have died from gun violence. This is far more than enough. It is long past time for Congress to take action--from closing background check loopholes and strengthening our national security to allowing research on gun control and repealing immunity for the gun industry, which prevents victims of gun violence from holding bad actors accountable."
Last week, Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) led a nearly 15-hour filibuster simply to ensure that two proposals would receive a vote in the Senate--and opponents of these efforts have insisted on a super-majority of 60 votes for either provision to pass.
NCAPA and the member organizations listed below strongly support passage of Senator Murphy's amendment, which would close loopholes that allow people to buy guns from unlicensed sellers at gun shows or over the internet without passing the background checks that are otherwise required.
NCAPA also strongly supports Senator Dianne Feinstein's (D-CA) amendment--which would close the "terror gap" that allows known or suspected terrorists to buy guns--while recognizing that a few of its members have raised civil liberties concerns with the measure.
The Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA) has been the leading voice within NCAPA for stronger gun control provisions. “Enough is enough. These measures are long overdue,” said APALA National President Johanna Hester. “The nation has suffered too many instances of tragic shootings – from Newtown to San Bernardino to the most recent mass shooting in Orlando last weekend. It’s about time Congress takes action and helps put a stop to this pattern of violence at home.”
According to a recent survey conducted by APIAVote, Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC, and AAPI Data, 77% of Asian American registered voters support stricter gun laws and 74% said gun control was an “extremely important” or “very important” issue--among the top issues of concern.
*The following NCAPA member organizations support stronger measures to help prevent gun violence, including the Murphy amendment:
1. Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum (APIAHF)
2. Asian American Psychological Association (AAPA)
3. Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC (AAJC)
4. Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO (APALA)
5. Asian Pacific Partners for Empowerment, Advocacy & Leadership (APPEAL)
6. Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO)
7. Boat People SOS (BPSOS)
8. Center for Asian Pacific American Women
9. Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement (CNHA)
10. National Asian American Pacific Islander Mental Health Association (NAAPIMHA)
11. National Asian Pacific American Families Against Substance Abuse (NAPAFASA)
12. National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF)
13. National Coalition for Asian Pacific American Community Development (CAPACD)
14. National Council of Asian Pacific Islander Physicians (NCAPIP)
15. National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA)
16. National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC)
17. National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA)
18. OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates (OCA)
19. Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF)
20. South Asian Americans Leading Together (SAALT)
21. Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)
Based in Washington, D.C., the National Council of Asian Pacific Americans is a coalition of 35 national Asian Pacific American organizations that serves to represent the interests of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander (AANHPI) communities and to provide a national voice for our communities’ concerns. Our communities are the fastest growing racial/ethnic group in the United States, currently making up approximately six percent of the population.