Hirono, Hanabusa Lead Resolution to Recognize Filipino American History Month
Sen. Mazie K. Hirono and Rep. Colleen Hanabusa recently introduced a bipartisan, bicameral resolution in the US Senate to recognize the month of October as Filipino American History Month. According to Sen. Hironoʻs press secretary, the resolution acknowledges the key role Filipino Americans play in shaping our country.
“In Hawaiʻi, we see the many contributions of the Filipino American community every day. They serve our country in uniform and elected office, teach our children in school, and run successful businesses,” Sen. Hirono said. “During my time in public service, I have fought to honor and recognize the contributions of the Filipino Veterans of World War II, and through this resolution Congress has come together on a bipartisan basis to pay tribute to a community that has given so much to our country.”
The Senate resolution is co-sponsored by Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.), Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Dean Heller (R-Nev.), Tim Kaine (D-Va.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Patty Murray (D-Wash.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii), Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.), and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.).
“Starting with the Sakada, Hawaiʻi has long benefitted from the hard work of Filipino Americans. They fought for this country during World War II, many making the ultimate sacrifice. We owe a lot of our local culture to Filipino contributions,” Rep. Hanabusa said. “Today, Filipinos are the largest ethnic group in Hawaiʻi, and continue to help shape the professional and political landscape. We are honored to recognize and laud the rich history of Filipino American contributions to Hawaiʻi and our great nation.”
The House resolution is co-sponsored by Reps. Judy Chu (D-CA-27), Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI-2), Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX-18), Pramila Jayapal (D-WA-7), Ro Khanna (D-CA-17), Barbara Lee (D-CA-13), Alan S. Lowenthal (D-CA-47), Jerry McNerney (D-CA-9), Grace Napolitano (D-CA-32), Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-DC-At Large), Scott H. Peters (D-CA-52), Jacky Rosen (D-NV-3), Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan (D-MP-At Large), Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (D-VA-3), Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15), Mike Thompson (D-CA-5), Juan Vargas (D-CA-51), and Frederica S. Wilson (D-FL-24).
In October 2017, after years of advocacy from Sen. Hirono and the Hawaiʻi Congressional Delegation, Congress awarded the Congressional Gold Medal to the Filipino Veterans of World War II.
In May 2017, Senator Hirono and Congresswoman Hanabusa introduced the Filipino Veterans Reunification Act, a bill that would expedite the visa process for children of Filipino World War II Veterans so they can be reunified with their families in the United States.