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Issue: 1252 Date: 8/21/2014
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Asian American Civic and Business Leaders Urge Transparency, Recovery in Ferguson

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        Leaders of the civic organization OCA St. Louis - Asian Pacific American Advocates stand in solidarity with Ferguson residents and business owners during this time of turmoil. OCA St. Louis - Asian Pacific Advocates and Asian American business owners in Ferguson urge transparency and recovery in the aftermath of the Michael Brown shooting.

        OCA St. Louis chapter president Thong Tarm stated, "This issue affects everyone in Ferguson as many of the business owners who have been looted are Asian American. We have deep sympathy for the family of Michael Brown, and Ferguson residents and business owners who simply want answers from their police and local government."

        Priyanka Patel, daughter of the owners of Sam's Market and Ferguson Liquor and Market, which were looted in the first and second rounds of damage, said, "We love this community and want to see things settle down. We would love to stay in the area but we don't know if we can do business in the area with all the looting going on. We have suffered a great monetary loss. We are appreciative of our customers who have come by to express their regrets at what has occurred and the residents who tried to stop the looting."

        "What is impressive is that the owners are not resentful, they just want to move forward with rebuilding and regaining customers," voiced OCA St. Louis Board Member Caroline Fan. "I have spoken to most of the Asian American owners, whose spirit of resilience has been impressive. Some of them have been in the community for 35 years. But the small group of people who persist in looting and damaging businesses is hurting local business owners who are an active part of sustaining Ferguson's economy."

        OCA St. Louis - Asian Pacific Advocates ( http://www.oca-stl.org/ ) was founded in 1973 as one of two founding chapters of OCA, a national organization focusing on civil rights, advocacy and professional development for Chinese Americans and Asian Pacific Americans. OCA National has 80 chapters and affiliates across the nation serving over 10 million Asian Pacific Americans.

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