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On MLK Day, Dedicate Ourselves for the Final Struggle for Justice and Equality

by Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV) Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012 at 8:11 AM
jfav_us@yahoo.com 213-241-0995 1610 Beverly Blvd. Los Angeles, Ca 90026

–“Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere.” As we marked and remember the struggle and victories of Martin Luther King Jr. today, we in the Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV) do not only remember him in marches and rallies but in a tribute to dedicate ourselves for the final struggle for Filipino World War II Veterans and their survivors final struggle for justice and against racism and discrimination. The testament that the struggle of MLK is vibrantly alive is that a sizeable majority of California US Representatives co-sponsor the equity bill for Filipino WW II vets, came from the Black Caucus . They are the worthy followers of MLK. Most famous of them of them is Rep. Lewis of Georgia who marched with MLK during the civil rights movement.

EPCC NEWS
JFAV Statement on Martin Luther King Jr. Day
January 16, 2012

On MLK Day, Dedicate Ourselves for the Final Struggle for Justice and Equality

Los Angeles –“Injustice anywhere is injustice everywhere.”

As we marked and remember the struggle and victories of Martin Luther King Jr. today, we in the Justice for Filipino American Veterans (JFAV) do not only remember him in marches and rallies but in a tribute to dedicate ourselves for the final struggle for Filipino World War II Veterans and their survivors final struggle for justice and against racism and discrimination.

The testament that the struggle of MLK is vibrantly alive is that a sizeable majority of California US Representatives co-sponsor the equity bill for Filipino WW II vets, came from the Black Caucus .

They are the worthy followers of MLK. Most famous of them of them is Rep. Lewis of Georgia who marched with MLK during the civil rights movement.

Jan.18 Day of Action

“As we are getting ready to troop to our legislators offices, so our Senator has all the reasons to introduce senate companion bill to HR 210 now, we pause to remember MLK ” says Regalado Baldonado, 85, Commissioner, San Francisco Veterans Affairs Commission during general assembly meeting in preparation for National Day of Action January 18th.

Denied of lump sum, veteran John Aspiras of JFAV-Los Angeles said; “ More than 100 combined vets, widows, and advocates will troop Feinstein local offices in Los Angeles and San Francisco to air public demand for equity that was denied for the last 65 years. Twenty other community leaders promised to call on the DC office to support vets direct action.”

“Widows were denied of any benefits in 2008. Our deceased husbands deserve the recognition and due benefits accorded to all American veterans and widows,” says Flor Delos Santos whose husband received Purple Heart medal.

The city councils of Los Angeles, San Francisco, Carson, and Daly City Councils have approved resolutions in support of HR 210. The California Senate is currently debating similar resolution to support HR 210.

During WW II, 250,000 Filipinos fought side by side with Americans to defend the Philippines, an American territory before and during the war. In 1946, the US Congress reneged from the promise of President Roosevelt to honor the Filipinos as American veterans, thus, taking away right for full recognition and full benefits.

In 2008, the US Congress granted one-time lump sum compensation to Filipino veterans. Of the 41,000 who applied, 27, 000 were denied. Two veterans groups filed separately lawsuits versus the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA). The Court of Appeals in California promised to hear the case soon.

During interview, Arnedo Valera, legal counsel of Justice for Filipino-American Veterans (JFAV) says, “Again, for those who believed in the principle and the demands under HR 210, I strongly urge you to fully support this bill and not pay lip service to it. All of us can play a historical role in making HR 210 come into fruition.”

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