Originally published by NCAPA on December 8, 2020
“Yousra Yusuf, president of the South Asian Public Health Association (SAPHA) commented:
The South Asian Public Health Association (SAPHA) congratulates Dr. Vivek Murthy, on his nomination as the Surgeon General of the United States of America, by the upcoming Biden-Harris Administration. While the country strives to recover from this unprecedented pandemic, SAPHA anticipates increased engagement with communities of color, including with US-based Asian and South Asian communities to address vaccine access, affordable physical and mental healthcare, and safe and full return to schools and businesses.
As a national non-profit organization committed to addressing the health and well-being of South Asians living in the US through advocacy, collaboration, and communication, SAPHA wishes Dr. Murthy continued success in his duties, and extends its support to the President-Elect’s health team to mitigate the current public health crisis.”
By Ashish Valentine and Anna Luy Tan
Originally published by The Juggernaut on June 12, 2020
“Yousra Yusuf, president of the South Asian Public Health Association (SAPHA), said those predispositions translate to higher risks of developing severe complications from the coronavirus. COVID-19 infection and mortality data for South Asian Americans are still not available — South Asians are counted under a more general Asian American category, sometimes along with Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders. “Not having that data puts us at a disadvantage of knowing where and which communities need help,” Yusuf said. In New York, for example, South Asian community leaders say that the city’s official numbers don’t represent the community’s true death toll.”
By Meghna Rao
Originally published by The Juggernaut on May 11, 2020
“There’s yet another misleading narrative at play, according to Yousra Yusuf, the president of the South Asian Public Health Association (SAPHA) — that most South Asians are well off and can afford to socially distance or to take time off work, or that there will be someone to take care of their families.”
““We are disproportionately affected,” Yusuf explained, “even just bringing up neighborhoods considered the epicenter of the disease, like Corona and Jackson Heights [in Queens], where 8% to 20% of the population is South Asian American.””
“Yusuf emphasizes that there is no single type of South Asian — understanding the health of South Asians requires addressing the community’s diversity, whether it’s the wide range of diets, the many types of jobs that people hold, or the different neighborhoods that they populate. “South Asians have higher rates of diabetes, why is that?” Yusuf asked. “It might be their diets. It might also be that they don’t have access to food, or they’re in food deserts, or maybe they don’t have enough space in the house to cook.””
South Asians across the U.S. must organize ourselves to amplify the demands of the Movement for Black Lives. Join national South Asian organizations to discuss how to organize our community associations, businesses, families, and religious institutions to divest from policing, push for anti-racist policies, and practice intra-racial solidarity that builds safer communities.
Zoé Samudzi is a writer, photographer, and sociology doctoral candidate at the University of California – San Francisco. She is a Black abolitionist, Buddhist, and Ambedkarite.
Event: South Asians in Defense of Black Lives: Conversation with Zoé Samudzi
Co-hosts: South Asians for Black Lives, Desis Rising Up and Moving (DRUM), Equality Labs, SAALT, Jakara Movement, Adhikaar, South Dakota Voices for Peace, API Chaya, South Asian Public Health Association, Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Atlanta, SAHARA, ASATA, 18 Million Rising, Chaya CDC, Stand with Kashmir.
Date: Friday, June 12th, 2020
Time: 6:00pm ET/3:00pm PT
Equality Labs has a list of resources on South Asians for Black Lives and has uploaded a live recording of the event here.
Art by Khushboo Kataria Gulati