Dear OCA-NY Members and Supporters:
Happy Year of the Snake! On behalf of the Board, we wish you and your families a healthy new year and positive encounters with a Snake's generosity! This year began with President Obama signing the 2013 National Defense Appropriations Act which includes anti-hazing provisions in the military. This initial legislative victory follows the conclusion of the court martials in Fort Bragg, North Carolina of the 8 superiors charged in connection with the death of Private Danny Chen. But, the fight for justice continues. Of the eight soldiers, four have been discharged from the Army. We are seeking the administrative discharge of the remaining four. Please go here to sign the online petition.
What happened to Danny led to an outcry for justice, nationally and worldwide. Danny's legacy must not be forgotten. Please support OCA-NY 's co-street naming campaign for the northeast corner of Elizabeth and Canal Streets in Manhattan' s Chinatown to be named "Danny Chen Way". This will be a permanent reminder that all our sons and daughters must be protected if they enlist to serve our country, America.
OCA-NY will join thousands in the celebration of the 40th Anniversary of OCA at the National Convention in Washington, D.C. in July. The Convention coincides with the newly signed federal legislation requiring the military to report to Congress in June on what steps the military has taken to stop hazing, a system for reporting hazing anonymously, and what more they can do, including increasing penalties for hazing. We look forward to a briefing on the military's report and expect its plan to be effective in preventing any other American soldier for being subjected to what happened to Danny.
This year also may lead to historic legislation on immigration reform. OCA-NY will march with thousands in D.C. on April 10th for passage of legislation that promotes family unity. We will keep you posted on the logistics of this event in the weeks ahead.
In preparation for the upcoming City Council and mayoral elections, OCA-NY will conduct voter registration and engage in voting rights education to ensure strong voter turnout . And of course, we will celebrate our cultural heritage. We proudly marched in the Lunar New Year parades in February and will participate in Asian American Heritage Month activities and the annual International Dragon Boat race in Flushing Meadows, Queens.
Thank you for your continued support and participation in OCA-NY's activities!
Elizabeth R. OuYang