Elevating Our Voice

Policy Platform

In 2012, EPIC organized a convening in Washington, D.C. that brought together 25 Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander leaders from Native Hawaiian, Chamorro, Samoan, Tongan, Marshallese, and Fijian communities, with community work experience as far reaching as Washington, California, Utah, and Arkansas.  The convening resulted in a Policy Platform Blueprint that expresses a common set of beliefs, positions, and recommendations that will represent the foundation of a national advocacy effort.  

Supporting Organizations

  • `Āinahau O Kaleponi Hawaiian Civic Club
  • Association of Hawaiian Civic Clubs
  • Arkansas Support Network
  • Asia Pacific Cultural Center
  • Mainland Council of Hawaiian Civic Clubs
  • Marshallese Educational Initiative
  • Marshallese Youth of Orange County
  • Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander Alliance
  • National Tongan American Society
  • National Pacific Islander Educator Network
  • Pacific Islander Health Partnership
  • Pacific Islander Student Association, San Diego State University
  • Pacific Islander Education and Retention, University of California, Los Angeles
  • Pacific Islanders Student Association, University of California, Los Angeles
  • The Queen Center
  • Samoan Community Development Center
  • Taulama for Tongans
  • Tongan Community Service Center
  • TOA Institute
  • United Territories of Pacific Islanders Alliance, San Diego
  • Weaving an Islander Netork for Cancer Awareness Research and Training

Priority Areas

Common threads are woven throughout EPIC’s advocacy work, regardless of whether education, health, or any other specific issue area is being addressed.

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Access

Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders are extremely diverse, including over 20 distinct ethnic groups, each with their own language and traditions, and immigration statuses that include from U.S. citizenship, U.S. nationals, Compact of Free Association migrants, and immigrants.  EPIC helps educate agencies and advocates for policies that provide access to essential social services for our commuinties.

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Disaggregated Data

Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders are rarely represented in racial and ethnic data collected and reported by federal and state agencies, who often use the outdated and overly broad “Asian Pacific Islander” category.  EPIC advocates for data that accurately reflects our diversity so that disparities across key socioeconomic characteristics can be identified and addressed.

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Culture & Language

While Native Hawaiians are indigenous to the United States, a significant percentage of Pacific Islanders are foreign born.  Unfortunately, important services are rarely provided in a culturally or linguistically competent manner for foreign born Pacific Islanders.  EPIC advocates for cultural and linguistic competency standards and inclusion where significant numbers of PIs live.