Round 70 college students gathered in Okada lounge on Thursday night for the launch of the Stanford Asian American Motion Committee’s (SAAAC) “No to APEC” marketing campaign — an effort to combat towards what they described as dangerous neoliberal insurance policies promoted by the Asia-Pacific Financial Cooperation (APEC).
In mid-November, San Francisco will host 21 member states of APEC — an financial discussion board looking for to advertise free commerce and financial progress within the area — on the group’s annual summit. In accordance with the APEC web site, the members “intention to create larger prosperity for the folks of the area by selling balanced, inclusive, sustainable, progressive and safe progress and by accelerating regional financial integration.”
Forward of the convention, SAAAC has joined a coalition of over 100 organizations throughout the nation in protesting the convention, arguing that APEC insurance policies hurt employees throughout the globe.
“Our experiences as Asian People in the USA could be very intently tied to transnational experiences of, for instance, migrants and the households and communities that we come from, and we simply really feel prefer it’s actually vital to oppose issues like APEC which serve to worsen the residing situations for them,” mentioned SAAAC president Amy Zhai ’25.
To kick off their marketing campaign, SAAAC welcomed a speaker from the Worldwide Migrants Alliance (IMA), an alliance of organizations supporting migrants, refugees and displaced folks throughout the globe. Organizers with the Malaya Motion SF, the San Francisco chapter of Malaya Motion, a company dedicated to democracy, human rights and nationwide sovereignty within the Philippines, additionally spoke at their Thursday teach-in.
Terry Valen, an organizer with IMA and the director of San Francisco’s Filipino Neighborhood Middle, shared a presentation contextualizing the “No to APEC” marketing campaign. He started the presentation by explaining his view on the idea of neoliberalism, which he says is central to APEC.
“Neoliberalism is the set of concepts, or a doctrine, that holds that free market capitalism is the easiest way of making certain prosperity and freedom for all,” Valen mentioned.
APEC’s dedication to neoliberalism, based on Valen, places income over folks, resulting in rising world wealth gaps and ecological collapse. He cited examples of what he says are the harms of neoliberalism, like the lack of Filipino farmers to profitably develop and promote their very own rice confronted with imported rice from Thailand.
“Numerous these free commerce offers are negotiated behind closed doorways and don’t have the enter and entry of employees, migrants, indigenous folks, ladies and others,” Valen mentioned.
On the teach-in, Caeli Benson, an organizer with Malaya Motion SF, condemned town of San Francisco for spending cash to welcome leaders like Filipino president Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr.
“He’s a dictator and the son of a dictator, and he has continued the bloody legacy of Marshal Regulation that his father began within the 70s,” Benson mentioned, talking of Marcos. Benson additionally added that Marcos has led a marketing campaign of historic revisionism and disinformation.
“We simply see that APEC has by no means traditionally supported Filipino employees and Filipino folks,” Benson mentioned.
Benson particularly finds this allocation of funds regarding at a time when proposed finances cuts threaten childcare packages and at the least one meals financial institution in San Francisco.
Rachel Lucero, one other organizer with Malaya Motion SF, expressed her considerations concerning the aged residents of the South of Market neighborhood, the place the convention will happen. These residents will face disruptions to public transportation, doubtlessly reducing accessibility to grocery shops and hospitals, Lucero mentioned.
The “No to APEC” marketing campaign just isn’t one solely for Asian American college students, Zhai mentioned.
“These are all issues which have tangibly touched our lives not directly or one other, and I really feel prefer it’s our duty to say one thing towards it, particularly at an establishment like Stanford the place it may be type of taken with no consideration that issues like APEC, issues like neoliberalism, are welcomed on this campus,” Zhai mentioned.
The Every day has reached out to APEC organizers for remark.