advancing wellness

Advancing Pasifika wellness in Washington state and in the US diaspora means that we have to begin to resist the ways that we have accepted the unjust realities as is and instead begin to collectivize our voice, build our civic power, and usher in the world that we would like for our future descendants and our elders to live in. At PICA-WA, we believe that wellness can only be achieved through politicizing our values of love and care and fighting for laws and policies that are humane and just.

our wellness policy priorities

NH/PI POLITICAL AUTONOMY

NH/PI POLITICAL AUTONOMY

Currently, there are no Pacific Islanders that hold any political office in WA. Many NH/PIs aren't able to vote due to COFA/US National/undocumented status. We stand with efforts to build up civic education and power within oppressed communities in helping them in getting a sense of their own power politically. We believe in full voting suffrage for Pacific Islanders who have made the US their home.

FOOD SOVEREIGNTY

FOOD SOVEREIGNTY

Food is at the center of our wellness and and also our unhealth. Pasifika communities have traditionally accessed their lands and oceans to provide sustenance for their families. Through environmental racism, many in our communities are now exposed to colonized diet that is disembodied from land and from culture. Access to healthy foods is critical for Pasifika well-being. We support food sovereignty movements that elevate localized food justice solutions.

HOUSING JUSTICE

HOUSING JUSTICE

NH/PIs in the State of Washington are five times more likely to experience homelessness than their white peers according to the One Night Count in 2020. Many NH/PIs facing housing insecurity often do not engage with housing service providers due to institutional paternalism and prescriptions, linguistic racism, and culturally irresponsive services that are not aligned with Pasifika cultural values. PICA-WA champions housing solutions that doesn't break our families apart  and lean on the family for the solutions.

IMMIGRATION JUSTICE

IMMIGRATION REFORM

Xenophobia goes hand in hand with white supremacy and has littered the ways that our national and local government systems continue to dehumanize the lives of those who are undocumented through policies that enforce an economic embargo in immigrant communities of color. Pacific Islanders who are undocumented face enforced poverty and a broken system that locks them up in detention centers. PICA-WA supports immigration policies that create pathways to citizenship/residency and policies that offer immediate economic relief.

POLICE ACCOUNTABILITY

POLICE ACCOUNTABILITY

Pasifika communities have suffered under policing policies that are birthed from anti-Indigenous and anti-Black sentiment. We are in alignment with restructuring our policing systems so it reflects the values of the communities they serve. We stand with the Black Lives Matter movement and the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women's Movement and call on the defunding of harmful policing systems while investing in public safety methods based on restorative justice principles.

HEALTH JUSTICE

HEALTH JUSTICE

The Covid 19 crisis has highlighted the devastating fact that NH/PIs face the worst health disparities compared to all other racial groups - intersections of COFA, US National, undocumented status, and chronic low wages in employment fields where NH/PIs work have all led to a significant part of the community lacking healthcare coverage expounding negative consequences in health outcomes for NH/PIs. PICA-WA combats these harms by fighting for accessible and culturally responsive healthcare.

DATA SOVEREIGNTY

DATA SOVEREIGNTY

The harmful lumping of Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders under the "API" label have led to the erasure of NH/PIs in the past decades in aggregated data but it has also led to the decades of political and funding disinvestment in NH/PI community infrastructure. PICA-WA is determined to fight for full data sovereignty not just for NH/PIs but for other Indigenous communities who are overlooked in data collection methods. We are committed to decolonizing data collection.

JUSTICE SYSTEM REFORM

JUSTICE SYSTEM REFORM

We know too well the plight of our Pasifika peoples in facing systematic state violence historically in their Oceanian homelands and in North America. We support the decriminalization of our NH/PI communities and restorative justice solutions that center community leadership in co-designing rehabilitation that centers the liberation of our incarcerated Pasifika family. We champion healing practices that restores harmony where those who have harmed and victims of harm are given real pathways to healing. 

PASIFIKA LIBERATION

PASIFIKA LIBERATION

PICA-WA is aligned with all Indigenous Pasifika movements struggling to regain control over the stewardship of Pasifika soil, oceans, waters and mountains. We align with West Papuan liberation efforts, Pacific-led climate justice efforts, the fight to protect water and mountain and also the struggle of Indigenous Pasifikans to be free of military occupation and nuclear poison from their traditional homelands.

HOLISTIC EDUCATION

HOLISTIC EDUCATION

PICA-WA believes that our Pasifika youth and their families are the best stewards of their educational journey - Pasifika youth suffer from the highest rates of suspension and expulsions according to OSPI data reports. Explicit racism from faculty who know little of our youth have led to dismal outcomes for our youth. We support educational policies that is rooted in cultural identity development and resourcing poor schools through equitable funding solutions.

QTPI Inclusion

QTPI Inclusion

We believe in the full integration of our queer & trans Pasifika siblings including Mahu, Fa'afafine, Fa'atane, Leiti, Vakasalewalewa, Gela and other Two-Spirit identities within Oceania that reflects our Indigenous references and commitment to decolonizing Christian and Western notions of the gender binary that continues to harm members of our communities.

LANGUAGE JUSTICE

LANGUAGE JUSTICE

Pasifika languages retain cultural and spiritual traditions and protocols rooted in right stewardship with the Earth. We believe that the technology that is our Indigenous languages need to be nurtured and perpetuated for generations to come. Our languages point back to the Pasifika soul - without it, we lose our soul. We lift up language justice and language access for all of our Pasifika languages.