AAPI Heritage Month: Judy Chu
“We are sick and tired of Republicans’ relentless attacks on every aspect of people’s private lives. This proposed rule demonstrates a callous disregard for the wellbeing of American women and families. From pushing an ideological abstinence-only agenda and denying low-income families access to contraceptives, to completely ignoring the rule of law and precedents established under Roe v. Wade – it’s clear that this Administration does not value Americans’ rights to accurate health information, comprehensive healthcare, or if and when one chooses to have a family.” – Judy Chu, from her press release on May 18, 2018.
Judy May Chu has begun breaking the glass ceiling and her mark has been felt in Congress since the day she was elected as the first Chinese-American woman to represent any district. The daughter of Chinese immigrants, she was raised in California, where she attended University of California, Los Angeles and earned a Bachelor’s of Arts in Mathematics. She then earned a Ph.D in psychology. Her rise in politics came from humble beginnings as a board member for the Garvey School District in the 1980s, followed by a three-term mayoral service for Monterey Park’s city council. Eventually, she was elected to the California State Assembly, which preceded her 2009 special election win for California’s 32nd congressional district. Once California was redistricted, she was elected as a Congresswoman for the House of Representatives to represent California’s 32nd congressional district. As a congresswoman, she has introduced HR 3471, the Women’s Health Protection Act (a bill creating federal protections against state laws that fail to protect women’s health), has voted to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, and has consistently fought to allow women access to birth control as a fundamental health right. While in a Republican-dominated House and Senate, bills advocating for women’s reproductive health have often been discouraged, Chu has maintained her approach to reproductive health as a right that all women deserve. In December of 2017, she was arrested for protesting on the Congress steps against the DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) repeal.
RHAP is grateful for elected officials such as Judy Chu who strives to fight back against our current administration who is trying to restrict reproductive bodies from access to reproductive health care. We pride ourselves in mobilizing our clinicians to organize and challenge legislation, and signing on to and participating in advocacy coalitions and initiatives that our sister organizations produce, such as the EACH Women’s Act, and the Women’s Health Protection Act.