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ACR-64 Little Saigon.(2013-2014)

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Assembly Concurrent Resolution No. 64

Relative to Little Saigon.

[ Filed with Secretary of State  September 09, 2013. ]


ACR 64, Allen. Little Saigon.
This measure would recognize the 25th anniversary of Little Saigon.
Fiscal Committee: NO  

WHEREAS, In April 1975, the capitol of South Vietnam, Saigon, fell to the Vietnamese communists, and over 38 years, millions of Vietnamese fled communist oppression in their homeland; and
WHEREAS, More than 1.5 million Vietnamese refugees became permanent residents and citizens of the United States, and over 600,000 resettled in California; and
WHEREAS, In June 1988 Governor George Deukmejian recognized the importance of Little Saigon as a major cultural, social, and commercial center of southern California, and freeway signs officially designating the Vietnamese business district in Westminster and Garden Grove “Little Saigon” were unveiled; and
WHEREAS, The signs gave official status to the title “Little Saigon,” recalling the name of the South Vietnamese capital more than a decade after it was changed to Ho Chi Minh City by the communist government; and
WHEREAS, Vietnamese refugees have turned the strip along the Magnolia Street-Bolsa Avenue corridor, an economically depressed area that was formerly populated with strawberry fields, old industrial factories, and vacant lots, into a thriving commercial district with thousands of shops and businesses; and
WHEREAS, Little Saigon is the largest Vietnamese community outside of Vietnam and is a destination for tourists and refugees from all over the world; and
WHEREAS, The designation of Little Saigon in Orange County represents the very first “Little Saigon” in the United States, and now there are other Vietnamese business districts of various sizes also named “Little Saigon” in Oakland, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, and San Jose in California, and in other states including Alabama, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Texas, and Virginia; and
WHEREAS, One can find all types of services and businesses in Little Saigon ranging from restaurants, supermarkets, medical clinics and centers, pharmacies, and law offices serving the Vietnamese American community as well as other local and surrounding area residents in Orange County; and
WHEREAS, With industrious drive and effective management, particularly in food services and restaurants, prices and services in Little Saigon are cheaper than in nearby areas, attracting not only Vietnamese Americans, but other residents and immigrant groups to visit; and
WHEREAS, Education is a priority to many Vietnamese families, the achievements of Vietnamese students are recognized in the Westminster and Garden Grove school districts, the Vietnamese language is becoming one of the main foreign languages being taught in those districts as well as in Orange County community colleges, and as of 2008, in southern California alone, there are more than 80 Vietnamese language centers teaching 17,000 students Vietnamese and Vietnamese culture; and
WHEREAS, Tet festivals and parades in Little Saigon celebrating the Vietnamese lunar new year in early February have attracted thousands of participants; and
WHEREAS, Vietnamese voters in Little Saigon are now a significant voting bloc, and Vietnamese Americans are political leaders on the city councils of Fountain Valley, Garden Grove, and Westminster, and on the Orange County Board of Supervisors, as well as on the school boards in districts serving these areas; and
WHEREAS, Tri Duc Ta was elected Mayor of Westminster on November 6, 2012, and became the first Vietnamese American elected mayor in the United States; and
WHEREAS, The Vietnamese community in Little Saigon pioneered many political movements demanding freedom in Vietnam and fighting against the oppression and dictatorship carried out by the totalitarian communist regime, which oppression is the main reason for slow economic growth in Vietnam. The Vietnamese community is launching a campaign demanding the immediate release of all prisoners of conscience who mainly ask that fundamental human rights be afforded to all of Vietnam’s citizens, and seek the separation of powers and removal of the one-party system; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the Assembly of the State of California, the Senate thereof concurring, That the Legislature hereby recognizes the 25th anniversary of Little Saigon; and be it further
Resolved, That the Chief Clerk of the Assembly transmit copies of this resolution to the author for appropriate distribution.