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Asian-Latino Coalition Aims To Register Minority Voters In Nevada

Political season is upon us, and pundits all over the media have been pontificating on how much, say, one candidate’s anti-immigration comments will - or will not- hurt him at the voting booth.

The key, though, for immigrants’ rights advocates, is to make sure people who are angered by the rhetoric get to the voting booth.

To that end, a number of Asian groups, such as the Asian-Pacific American Labor Alliance, have teamed up with Mi Familia Vota and the Service Employees International Union to form AIPA Vote, which is launching an intense voter registration drive for people in those communities.

KNPR’s State of Nevada talked with organizers about the group’s plans, the issues important to the Asian and Latino communities – and what they have in common. 

“We both care about having jobs, health care, education, immigration, voting rights and I think that all of these issues that are important to both of our communities are what’s giving us the energy to go out into the community and say to the community, 'it's time we stand up, we vote, we register at this moment,'” Emilia Pablo, the Nevada state director of Mi Familia Vota, said.

The organization hopes to use everything from grocery stores to non-profit groups to get the word out about registering to vote.

Support comes from

This is not the first time the two communities have come together in support of one cause, Christine Chen, the executive director for AIPA Vote, told KNPR's State of Nevada. 

“For the Asian and Latino community this partnership is nothing new, for decades we have worked in coalition on passing immigration reform and now really focusing on comprehensive immigration reform,” Chen said.

Pablo said immigrant communities all came to the U.S. for the same thing.

“We all came here to work for a better life," she said. "We want a good job that pays decently and good health insurance to go with that.”

Pablo said many of the people her group has helped register to vote have been motivated by Donald Trump's comments about immigrants, especially young people.

“Here in Las Vegas, we have approximately 40,000 Latino youth who are 18, eligible, who are very motivated because of the comments... that are now coming to our office and it's exactly who is getting much more energized than any other community to stand up and take action,” Pablo said.

 

Guests

Christine Chen, executive director, AIPA Vote; Emilia Pablo, Nevada state director, Mi Familia Vota.

 

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