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The People Build the Place, The People Build the Power

DATE & TIME: 11:30am -1:00pm EDT September 29, 2016
As part of the Conversations on Diversity & Social Justice, Cathy Dang, Executive Director of CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities, will talk about the organization’s 30-year commitment to building the power of low-income Asian immigrants and refugees in New York City.

Celebrating 30 years, CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities is a pan-Asian community-based organization that works to build the power of low-income Asian immigrants and refugees in New York City.  Cathy Dang will discuss CAAAV’s history of organizing and movement building working in alliances locally and nationally. The organization’s theory of change - base-building, leadership development, campaigns, strategic alliances, and organizational development - is the foundation to how it wins change. Its framework of organizing is rooted in an understanding of systems and institutions that impact us collectively and they organize with an understanding of how structural racism, capitalism, and patriarchy affect the poor, working-class, immigrants/refugees, Native and communities of color.  Through CAAAV’s fight for housing justice and police accountability, it organizes low-income Asian immigrants for racial, gender, and economic justice towards systemic and institutional change. From developing immigrant tenant leaders to hold their landlord and NYCHA accountable or youth to stand in solidarity with Black and Latino communities around police violence, CAAAV stands firmly on winning not just for Asian communities but all communities most directly impacted by the system. 

Cathy Dang is the Executive Director of CAAAV: Organizing Asian Communities, a pan-Asian organization that organizes low-income Asian immigrants for systemic and institutional change towards racial, gender, and economic justice. Their primary area of organizing is housing justice in Chinatown and Queensbridge Public Housing. While living conditions can become deplorable, CAAAV fights for safe and healthy living conditions in addition to preventing massive displacement of long-time residents and families. CAAAV has organized on police accountability since the 1990s recognizing that in order to win racial justice we need to tackle the system that perpetuates the root causes of racism and economic inequality. Cathy has organized in labor and community-led development for over 10 years with Restaurant Opportunities Centers United, the Retail Action Project and other grassroots organizations. She is originally from Ridgewood, Queens and Los Angeles, California, and a proud daughter of Chinese-Vietnamese refugee parents who raised her in their nail salon in Downtown Brooklyn.

For more information, contact Peter Naccarato at pnaccarato@mmm.edu. 

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