You may remember last year when FIRM supported Assembly Bill 176, which we hoped would allow for the disaggregation of data in the Asian community. This means that we could get a real look at data from the Hmong, Laotian, Cambodian and other communities that simply do not get counted in the all important areas of higher education and health. Unfortunately, Governor Brown vetoed AB 176 to the disappointment of many.
Well, this year, AB 1726 was introduced by Assembly Member Bonta, which we hope will make it possible for this data to be collected. This bill is fundamentally important to members of the Asian American/Pacific Islander community so that all people are counted. We believe in this bill so much that we partnered with the Southeast Asian Resource Action Center (SEARAC) and Stone Soup to send over 30 representatives from the Hmong and Lao community in Fresno to advocate on behalf of this bill! Residents rallied, attended a press conference and went to the Assembly Health Committee Hearing to see if it passes through to the next step in the process! This is a great experience for residents to understand the legislative process and be involved in a bill that has significant impact on their own communities! We will keep you in the loop on the outcome and hope that AB1726 becomes law in the near future!