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Community Organizing

In our community organizing work, we use popular education and community-based participatory research to develop the leadership of Asian women and girls to plan and lead campaigns for specific and measurable gains at the local and state level. Through our organizing, we aim to implement social change at the individual, community, institutional and societal levels, and develop and sustain the presence, voice and leadership of young Asian women in the Reproductive Justice and Social Justice Movements.

Nail Salon Workers

In California, it is estimated that nail salon ownership is 80% Vietnamese. While no industry-wide statistics are available, interviews with nail salon workers, discussions with youth members, and observations in a wide variety of salons, confirm that Vietnamese-owned nail salons employ exclusively or majority Vietnamese immigrant women, most of child-bearing age, who generally work for long hours. In addition, almost no research has been carried out on health risks from chemicals encountered by nail salon workers throughout their 60-70 hour workweek, much less on the growing sector of the industry: Vietnamese women workers.

An indication that nail technicians are concerned is they are the second highest occupational group to call the Hazards Evaluation System and Information Service of the California Department of Health Services. For example, manicurists often report health problems including headaches, asthma, chronic cough, dermatitis, runny or dry nose, and fatigue and depression.

The POLISH project works alongside these workers and offers educationals that builds awareness about how they can better protect themselves and change their work conditions.

Asian Communities for Reproductive Justice Network Resources:

  • Asian & Pacific Islander American Health Forum: APIAHF
  • Asian Community Mental Health Services
  • San Francisco Community Health Center (Formerly API Wellness Center)
  • National Asian Women's Health Organization
  • Asian & Pacific Islander Populations - US Census
  • Asian Community Online Network
  • Asian Health Services Online Network
  • Asian Week
  • National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum: NAPAWF
  • Health & Reproductive Rights Issues
  • Activism for Women's Health
  • International Women's Health Coalition
  • Breast Cancer Action
  • National Breast Cancer Coalition

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