Advancing Justice | Chicago and AAMP strongly support conversion of Broadway Armory into temporary shelter for asylum-seekers. 

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago and Asian American Midwest Progressives are non-profit organizations dedicated to building power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Many of our community leaders call the historically diverse neighborhoods of Uptown and Edgewater home and organize with Asian Americans and allies across Chicagoland for a more just and equitable city and state for all.

As organizations committed to supporting immigrants and refugees and centering the needs of our most vulnerable community members, we strongly support the move to convert the Broadway Armory into a temporary shelter for recently arrived asylum-seekers.

Uptown and Edgewater have for decades been home to generations of refugees and migrants from all over the world. As Asian Americans whose families have been displaced by war, economic hardship, and political instability, we understand intimately the trauma and difficulties of fleeing your home country and seeking safety in another land.

The difficulty of finding safe housing solutions for our new neighbors comes as no surprise. Chicago is in a housing crisis. With more than 65,000 individuals experiencing houselessness in Chicago, our local agencies have been overwhelmed and underfunded for decades.

We urge the city to continue to identify safe temporary shelters for migrants and move asylum-seekers out of police stations as soon as possible. In addition, we know the city can and must use this moment as an opportunity to greatly expand its affordable housing system and create long-term solutions. Permanent solutions like the Bring Chicago Home campaign to create a dedicated fund for affordable housing are necessary to ensure that all residents have a safe place to live.

We look forward to continuing our work with community partners and allies to ensure Chicago is truly a sanctuary city—for newly arrived asylum-seekers and for all people who call our city home. 


Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to building power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Advancing Justice | Chicago focuses on five key issue areas: immigrant justice, language access, criminal justice reform & public safety for all, voting rights & democracy, and education equity.  

Asian American Midwest Progressives (AAMP) is a 501(c)(4) non-profit organizaiton dedicated building political power in the Midwest through collective advocacy and electoral organizing to achieve racial equity. Founded in 2019, AAMP currently has chapters in Illinois and Ohio.  

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Chicago Racial Justice Organizations Strongly Support Mayor Johnson’s Appointments to Board of Education

For Immediate Release: July 10, 2023
Contact: Ankur Singh |
Grace Pai |

Chicago Racial Justice Organizations Strongly Support Mayor Johnson’s Appointments to Board of Education

— We, the undersigned organizations, strongly support and congratulate Mayor Brandon Johnson’s
recently announced appointees to the Chicago Board of Education: Mariela Estrada, Mary Fahey Hughes, Rudy Lozano Jr, Michelle Morales, Jianan Shi, Dr. Elizabeth Todd-Breland, and Tanya D. Woods. These appointees bring a diverse range of expertise, identities, professional and life experiences, and community ties that will help them represent and make decisions on behalf of hundreds of thousands of Chicago Public Schools students and families.

As organizations that work on education equity issues, youth organizing, and racial justice campaigns, we are thrilled that Mayor Johnson has selected a well-rounded group of individuals who each bring critical perspectives to their roles.

The appointees include experts in special education, juvenile justice/systems-involved youth, early childhood education, student-centered learning, bilingual education, alternative education, and restorative and transformational justice. All seven have served on a Local School Council. The vast majority have deep ties to community-based organizations, youth and/or parent engagement, and grassroots organizing. Six of the seven appointees are current or former Chicago Public Schools parents. Four are former K-12 educators in Chicago. Two are immigrants and four were raised in multilingual families. In addition, Dr. Elizabeth Todd-Breland is a sitting member of the Chicago Board of Education who will continue in her role and bring institutional knowledge and continuity to the new board.

This thoughtful group of leaders represents the diversity of our great city, but we know that equity isn’t satisfied simply by representation. It is their thoughtfulness around community leadership, their openness to new ideas, and their accountability to the communities historically ignored in Chicago policymaking that makes us most proud to call this group our new Chicago Board of Education.

We look forward to working with this Board to center the voices of the 89% of students who are BIPOC, and 78% who are low-income. Until we have a fully elected school board in 2027, we know these appointed leaders will play a critical role in advancing equity across our schools. We look forward to partnering with them on that mission.


Alliance of Filipinos for Immigrant Rights and Empowerment
Asian American Midwest Progressives
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago
Brighton Park Neighborhood Council
Cambodian Association of Illinois
Casa Michoacan – FEDECMI
Chicago Housing Initiative
Chicago Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights
Chinese American Museum of Chicago
Chinese American Service League
Chinese Mutual Aid Association
Coalition for a Better Chinese American Community
Cook County College Teachers Union – Local 1600
Crossroads Fund
Field Foundation of Illinois
Grassroots Collaborative
Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights
Indo-American Center
Institute for Research on Race and Public Policy
Japanese American Citizens League Chicago
Japanese American Service Committee
Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA)
Midwest Asian Health Association
Northside Action for Justice
OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates, Greater Chicago Chapter
Palenque LSNA
People Matter
Ping Tom Park Advisory Council
Project: VISION, Inc.
South Asian American Policy and Research Institute (SAAPRI)
United African Organization
United Working Families
Urban Village Church, Wicker Park
Woods Fund Board of Directors

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Asian Americans Advancing Justice Denounces  Supreme Court Decision on Affirmative Action


Media Contact: 

Michelle Boykins, Advancing Justice – AAJC, 
Niketa Kumar, Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus,
Liana Liang, AJSOCAL,
James Woo, Advancing Justice – Atlanta,
Grace Pai, Advancing Justice | Chicago, 

Asian Americans Advancing Justice Denounces Supreme Court Decision on Affirmative Action

Washington, D.C. – June 29, 2023 – In response to the Supreme Court’s decision today in SFFA v. Harvard and SFFA v. UNC striking down the race-conscious admissions policies at both schools, Asian Americans Advancing Justice (Advancing Justice) denounced the decision as an attack on civil rights and called for an increased commitment from universities and policymakers to ensure equitable opportunities for all students and diversity in higher education. 

Advancing Justice, an affiliation of five independent Asian American civil rights organizations across the nation, has long advocated for race-conscious admissions policies as an essential tool to provide equal opportunities for students of color, including Asian Americans. 

In its decision, the Supreme Court’s hyper-partisan majority struck a deep blow to students and racial equity in education by holding that Harvard and UNC’s affirmative action programs violated the equal protection clause of the Fourteenth Amendment. The ruling does not address race-conscious policies in any other contexts, such as in K-12 education, in the workplace, in government contracts, in philanthropic giving, or elsewhere. 

“We are outraged that the Supreme Court has chosen to ignore long-standing legal precedent in favor of supporting racial inequity that harms all people of color, including Asian Americans,” said John C. Yang, President and Executive Director of Advancing Justice – AAJC. “But we are more committed than ever to ensuring equal opportunity for our children – and for all children in this country. We will not let this court decision keep us from pushing colleges and universities, Congress, and others to keep today’s ruling from undermining the progress made toward educating future multiracial, talented leaders who deserve every opportunity to reach their highest potential on campuses that reflect the diversity of America.”

“In today’s ruling, the Supreme Court’s majority ignores our long history and present reality of systematically denying people of color, particularly Black Americans, equal access to education,” said Aarti Kohli, Executive Director of Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus. “Racism and anti-Blackness are inescapable in our country, and race-conscious admissions are a crucial tool in expanding opportunities for students of color that reckons with those realities. For Asian Americans, this ruling will particularly harm Pacific Islander, Native Hawaiian, and Southeast Asian communities who continue to face significant barriers to higher education. At a moment when our country is increasingly segregated and there are significant gaps in resources for majority minority schools, we call on Congress, our local elected leaders, and universities to do everything in their power to implement solutions we really need for economic equity and racial justice in our nation.”

“For Asian American students and all others, racially diverse student bodies both enhance their learning and foster understanding of each student’s lived experience,” said Connie Chung Joe, CEO of Asian Americans Advancing Justice Southern California. “In our ever-changing global economy and platform, we must continue to give all students the opportunity to fulfill their potential and shape a future built strong on our biggest asset – our diversity.” 

“We unequivocally condemn the ruling by the Supreme Court to reverse these affirmative action policies, thus ensuring that systemic racism continues to be embedded in higher education,” said Grace Pai, Executive Director of Advancing Justice – Chicago. “As Asian Americans, we will not allow our communities to be used as a prop by the conservative movement to advance a white supremacist agenda.”

“Declaring these race conscious policies unconstitutional is a barely disguised tool to once again remove students of color from our nation’s campuses and perpetuate the historical legacy of institutionalized racism in education that continues, especially in the south,” said Phi Nguyen, Executive Director of Advancing Justice – Atlanta. “We will continue to fight for racial justice and ensure that everyone has access to a quality education.”

Last August, Advancing Justice filed two amicus briefs in SFFA v. Harvard — one of which was joined by 37 Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) civil rights groups, advocacy organizations, professionals, and student organizations — demonstrating how AAPI communities both benefit from and support affirmative action, and detailing how the elimination of race consideration in admissions programs will harm Black, Latinx, Indigenous, Asian, and other students of color. 

Although the ruling impacts race-conscious admissions in higher education, colleges and universities have a responsibility to promote and embrace diversity, including cultivating affinity groups, increasing meaningful outreach to communities of color, expanding financial assistance, and dismantling legacy admissions programs. Advancing Justice calls for them to urgently prioritize these actions. It also calls for policymakers and other leaders to use this moment to set a comprehensive agenda for achieving equity in education long before students apply to college, including expanding access in K-12 schools, which are more segregated today than they were 50 years ago. 

# # #

Asian Americans Advancing Justice

Asian Americans Advancing Justice is a national affiliation of five leading organizations advocating for the civil and human rights of Asian Americans and other underserved communities to promote a fair and equitable society for all. The affiliation’s members are: Advancing Justice – AAJC (Washington, DC), Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, Advancing Justice Southern California (AJSOCAL), Advancing Justice – Atlanta, and Advancing Justice – Chicago.

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AAPI Heritage Month

This May’s Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we will be celebrating our diverse community. Advancing Justice | Chicago is partnering with individuals and local businesses to bring awareness to our mission and help give back by supporting our work in different ways.

We are thrilled to be partnering with restaurants, bars, and businesses for #doughsomething once again, as well as raffling items from our in-kind partners.

(as of 5/28/24)

Name Item(s)
Apologue Liqueurs from Coquetel Collective Proceeds from Apologue Liqueurs cases sold per account
(Collabing with other opportunities like Chef’s Special, Perilla, Jook Sing, etc)
BiXi Beer Seated chef collaborative multi-course dinner for 30 guests
(Seating 7 PM, Dinner at 7:30 PM)
Chef’s Special Cocktail Bar Proceeds from the Double Lemon cocktail
Chef’s Special Cocktail Bar Proceeds from each cocktail sold on Mondays for Snax & Daqs
Cherry Circle Room Proceeds from Housemade Milk Bread with whipped ricotta, fig mostarda, port wine syrup, onion marmalade
Dorothy Proceeds from You’re Spring to Me cocktail sold at May IRL Singles Mixer event
Gaijin Proceeds from the Haru Hana cocktail (sake, Apologue PawPaw liqueur, chrysanthemum, lemon)
Half Acre Beer Co.
Proceeds from Half Acre Beer and Minahasa collab: Beef Rendang Animal Fries (5/31 – 6/2)
and Minahasa
Honey Butter Fried Chicken Proceeds from HBFC and Fila Manila collab Sandwich (both HBFC locations)
Jook Sing AANHPI Cocktail Pop-Up feat. Coquetel Collective
Jook Sing Proceeds from the Charity Daiquiri cocktail
Ludlow Liquors AAPIHM Mini Market
Sun 5/19 at 2-7 PM
Ludlow Liquors Proceeds from the Life’s a Drag cocktail (using Apologue Saffron)
OiYan Poon One signed copy of “Asian American is Not a Color” book giveaway via personal Instagram; Book Signing and Conversation with Rupal Soni
at Anderson’s Bookshops – Naperville, IL on May 31 – RSVP here
Perilla Proceeds from the Jasmine Dragon cocktail (Jasmine-Damsoul, Madre Mezcal, Accompani “Mari Gold” Amaro, Ming River Baiju)
Prairie Grass Cafe Proceed from Volition Tea
Saigon Sisters Proceeds from Grilled Steak Salad
Side Practice Coffee Proceeds from Ton Ton Merienda (Combo): Small Drip Coffee + Cheese Ensaymadas from Umaga Bakehouse
TriBecca’s Sandwich Shop Proceeds from Tangerine Poppyseed donut


May 1

Pan Asian Voter Empowerment
Asian American Action Day

Springfield, IL

On May 1, hundreds of Asian American community leaders with the Pan Asian Voter Empowerment (PAVE) Coalition will kick off Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with a rally at the Illinois State Capitol. The rally will feature community testimonies calling on lawmakers to pass the Language Equity and Access Act (SB3762), fully fund immigrant services, create progressive revenue streams to generate new funding solutions for the state, and invest in the implementation of K-12 inclusive history requirements.

May 14
Heritage Month Chefs’ Charity Dinner

BiXi Beer
2515 North Milwaukee Avenue
Chicago, IL, 60647

In honor of Heritage Month, BiXi Beer will host a special chefs’ collaborative dinner on Tuesday, May 14th at 7 PM benefiting Advancing Justice | Chicago!

This is a five-course prix fixe meal with chefs Bo Fowler, Thai Dang, Won Kim, Sherrie Tan, and Margaret Pak. Seatings are very limited.

Click HERE to secure your reservation through Resy!

May 19

Coquetel Collective and Ludlow Liquors:
AAPINH Mini Market


Ludlow Liquors
2959 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60618
IG: @ludlowliquors

Come support or discover your new favorite creatives in your local Asian American community.

👉🏼 Food vendors
👉🏼 Artisans
👉🏼 DJs
👉🏼 Healers
👉🏼 Crafters
👉🏼 Cocktail Features from your AAPINH bar community

#aapi #aapinh #asianamerican #popupmarket

May 21

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago’s A Just Chi Giving Project
Tropic Like It’s Hot – Our Voice, Our Power

BITES Asian Kitchen + Bar
3313 North Clark Street
Chicago, L 60657

May 31 – June 2
Half Acre Beer Co. and Minahasa collaboration!

Half Acre Beer Co.
2050 W Balmoral Ave
Chicago, IL 60625

In recognition of Asian American & Pacific Islander Heritage Month, Half Acre will be serving @minahasachicago – Beef Rendang Animal Fries – May 31–June 2, with a portion of the proceeds donated to @advancingjusticechicago for #doughsomething

Enjoy some special eats for a special cause.


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Asian Americans Advancing Justice affiliation express strong support for the confirmation of Julie Su


CONTACT: Grace Pai (Executive Director) (224) 289-5291

CHICAGO, IL — April 10, 2023. On behalf of Asian Americans Advancing Justice and the 56 undersigned organizations representing Asian American and Pacific Islander communities, we write to express our strong support for the confirmation of Julie Su to serve as the next U.S. Secretary of Labor to Chair Sanders and Ranking Member Cassidy.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice is a national affiliation of five leading organizations advocating for the civil and human rights of Asian Americans and other underserved communities to promote a fair and equitable society for all. The affiliation’s members are: Advancing Justice – AAJC (Washington, DC), Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus, AJSOCAL (Southern California), Advancing Justice – Atlanta, and Advancing Justice – Chicago.

Two years ago, Advancing Justice first supported Ms. Su’s candidacy to be Secretary of Labor, as well as her nomination for her current role as the Deputy Secretary of Labor. If confirmed to be the U.S. Secretary of Labor, Ms. Su would become the only Asian American head of a federal department.

In her current role, Ms. Su has been an indispensable leader within DOL, working across government for a more inclusive economy. This has included working closely with Secretary Walsh to avert a nationwide railroad strike, improving labor standards enforcement to protect the most vulnerable workers, and modernizing workforce development programs. Ms. Su has not only built strong working relationships among federal government leaders to accomplish this progress, but has also built trust with labor unions, worker organizations, and business groups across the country.

Since her confirmation as the Deputy Secretary at the DOL in 2021, she has served as the de facto Chief Operating Officer managing over 16,000 federal employees and a budget of over $14 billion. Now, with this and past experience, she is uniquely qualified and positioned to further deliver on labor, workforce, and employment goals for the nation.

Previously serving as Secretary for the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, Ms. Su led the largest state labor department in the United States, managing a governmental agency of over 11,000 employees for the most populous state in the nation. In the face of the devastating economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, she was a clear leader in protecting the health and safety of workers and promoting sound economic policy to support small businesses and their workers. Prior to this position, Ms. Su’s work as the California Labor Commissioner for nearly a decade brought praise from both workers’ advocates and the business community for her effectiveness in governance and enforcement, promoting fairness for both workers and employers.

Before her service in government, Ms. Su fought for human rights and worked to protect the rights of the most vulnerable. Ms. Su began her career litigating workers’ rights cases at Asian Americans Advancing Justice Southern California (AJSOCAL), formerly known as Asian Pacific American Legal Center, exposing the atrocities in sweatshops in El Monte, California where Thai garment workers were trafficked into the United States and forced to sew garments behind barbed wire and under armed guard. Her effectiveness as a litigator brought forth a multimillion-dollar settlement and protected the rights of the most vulnerable workers in our country as well as paving the way for protections for immigrant human trafficking survivors.

Decades later, Ms. Su is a nationally recognized expert on labor policy and workers’ rights, dedicating her over 25-year career to the advancement of workers’ rights, fair labor practices, and advancing equity and opportunities for workers.

Ms. Su’s career demonstrates how uniquely positioned she is to successfully lead the U.S. Department of Labor. Furthermore, her lived experience as a daughter of immigrants, a woman of color, and an Asian American makes her uniquely qualified to lead the Department charged with the immense task of protecting the livelihoods of all Americans in our vibrant and inclusive democracy. We urge the Senate to swiftly confirm Julie Su as U.S. Secretary of Labor.

Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AAJC
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | AJSOCAL
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Asian Law Caucus
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Atlanta
Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago
Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum
Asian American Civic Association
Asian American Coalition of Ohio
Asian American Federation
Asian American Leadership Council
Asian American Voices United
Asian and Pacific Islander American Vote (APIAVote)
Asian Community Development Corporation
Asian Community Development Council
Asian Counseling and Referral Service
Asian Law Alliance
Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS)
Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance, AFL-CIO
Asian Pacific Partners for Empowerment, Advocacy and Leadership (APPEAL)
Asian Real Estate Association of America (AREAA)
Asian Services in Action (ASIA)
Association of Asian American Investment Managers
Association of Asian Pacific Community Health Organizations (AAPCHO)
Center for Southeast Asians
Chinatown Service Center
Chinese American Citizens Alliance
Chinese Community Center
Council of Korean Americans
Empowering Pacific Islander Communities
Filipino Advocates for Justice
Hamkae Center
Hmong National Development, Inc.
Island Liaison, Inc.
Japanese American Citizens League
Japanese American Citizens League, Arizona Chapter
Laotian American National Alliance
LEAP (Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics)
Main Line Chinese Culture Center, Inc.
Missouri Asian American Youth Foundation
National Asian Pacific American Bar Association (NAPABA)
National Asian Pacific American Families Against Substance Abuse
National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF)
National Asian Pacific Center on Aging (NAPCA)
National Council of Asian Pacific Americans (NCAPA)
National Federation of Filipino American Associations
National Korean American Service & Education Consortium (NAKASEC)
National Tongan American Society, The
New Mexico Asian Family Center
OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates
OCA-Asian Pacific American Advocates Greater Houston Chapter
Ohio Chinese American Association (OCAA)
Pacific Asian Counseling Services
Self-Help for the Elderly
Sikh American Legal Defense and Education Fund (SALDEF)
South Asian American Policy and Research Institute (SAAPRI)
South Asian Public Health Association
Southeast Asia Resource Action Center (SEARAC)
Cc: Members of the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor & Pensions


Asian Americans Advancing Justice | Chicago builds power through collective advocacy and organizing to achieve racial equity. Learn more at

Asian Americans Advancing Justiceis a national affiliation of five leading organizations advocating for the civil and human rights of Asian Americans and other underserved communities to promote a fair and equitable society for all. The affiliation’s members are: Advancing Justice|AAJC (Washington, DC), Advancing Justice – Asian Law Caucus (San Francisco), Advancing Justice Southern California (AJSOCAL), Advancing Justice – Atlanta, and Advancing Justice – Chicago.

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