November 29, 2010
JFAV LAUDS NEW NAFFAA CHAIR AND REDIRECTED ADVOCACY GOALS
Letter to the Editor
The Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV), a national alliance of Filipino World War II veterans, widows and their relatives, youth and students and community advocates and their allied organizations welcomes the a new face in Filipino-American leadership in the National Federation of Filipino-American Associations (NAFFAA).
JFAV National Coordinator Arturo P. Garcia, in a statement after Thanksgiving Day, expressed great hope that after the Midwest region’s Michigan-based Ed Navarra became the new chair of the disintegrating national organization, things will become better for the the prime national organizations of Filipino-Americans in the United States.
Garcia said, “JFAV is elated at Navarra’s statement that he wants to fight for more benefits for the Filipino World War II veterans who are dwindling in numbers.” JFAV pointed out the fact that out of the more than 46,000 war veterans who applied for lump sum claims, around 22,000 were denied by the US Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA).
“This will be the best Thanksgiving gift from NAFFAA for all World War II veterans if NAFFAA will be true to its word and will be actively involved in the advocacy for our veterans and widows and their legal heirs.” Garcia exclaimed.
JFAV supports Navarra’s thought of refocusing priorities of the NAFFA away from the problems in the Philippines, and more on the issues affecting the Filipinos in the US. As Navarra said, “NaFFAA is not just about Filipinos assisting the Philippines. But our problems here should come first.”
JFAV noted that during the past years, NAFFAA became a mouthpiece of the Philippine government regardless of who is in power, and is always late in advocacy for Filipino-American community empowerment in the United States.
JFAV also supports Navarra, when said that he wants to advocate for the rights of overseas workers — especially those undocumented who endure abuse from employers for fear of deportation.
JFAV feels a new fresh breath of air came to our community. JFAV believes that Navarra’s statement that NAFFAA will correct some errors in the past is in the right direction.