May is Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month in the United States — a month to honor the contributions to history, culture, and society made by the AAPI communities. Since the first major wave of Asian immigrants arrived in mid-19th century, AAPI folks have been an integral part of California’s building and infrastructure industry.
Many of the achievements, as well as the struggles, of AAPI communities are not often told as part of American history. AAPI Heritage Month is an excellent time for us to start learning and listening to the AAPI experiences.
- Learn about AAPI history and experiences through AGC’s educational resource recommendations. We have put this together to make it easy to share with your employees and colleagues.
- Create a safe space for employees to engage in conversations and learn together as a community.
- Discover the diversity within the AAPI communities. AAPI is made up of over 20 ethnicities with roots in a vast region of our world, which is rarely represented in the mainstream media. Actively seek out creators and content from AAPI communities that you are less familiar with.
- Support and amplify AAPI perspectives in the workplace. Listen to your AAPI employees’ feedback.
- Support the economic development of AAPI-owned contractors by partnering with associations such as Asian American Contractors Association, Chinese American Construction Professionals, and CalAsian Chamber of Commerce on your company’s business inclusion and outreach efforts.
Be careful not to:
- Simply spotlight AAPI employees and colleagues internally or externally. Diversity and inclusion are not the same.
- Assume your AAPI employees and colleagues are willing and available to assist in planning your company’s AAPI Heritage Month celebration.
- Stop at marketing and social media messaging – move into action by following the above suggestions and encouraging your teams to do the same!