September 11, 2019
Contact: Rebecca Lee
(202) 695-1241 /

Washington, D.C. — Today, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has proposed to stop court-mandated EEO-1 pay data collection broken down by race and gender. 

National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) Executive Director Sung Yeon Choimorrow issued the following statement in response:

“Let it be known that the EEOC’s proposal, if implemented, will further invisiblize AAPI women and girls. We strongly oppose this stop collection of wage gap data, and we will not silently allow ourselves to be erased from the national conversation about the wage gap. 

“Are AAPI women equal under the law? Our lived experiences and the data show that we are not. AAPI women must work, on average, two extra months for our pay to catch up with the annual pay of white men–and average wage gaps in several AAPI ethnic subgroups are significantly larger.”

“The ‘model minority’ myth, which views AAPIs as a monolith and assumes that all AAPIs have socioeconomic stability, makes it harder for us to fight the wage gap for the AAPI women who need it the most. Hmong and Cambodian women earn on average only 57 and 60 cents to the white male dollar, respectively. The ‘model minority’ myth furthers the idea that these communities don’t need additional resources or support. Those in power, who buy into the myth, have responded by gutting, underfunding, or ignoring lifesaving programs that support us. This is the same myth that will continue to rear its head if the EEOC refuses to collect wage data about AAPIs. Further, the data that EEOC collected prior to this stop collection was inadequate because it was not disaggregated by ethnicity, hiding the fact that many AAPI women have even larger wage gaps than the average wage gap. AAPI women and girls deserve better data, rather than an effort to erase us.”

“For AAPI women, other women of color, and immigrant women, the inability to become financially independent has ripple effects across all aspects of our lives. Wage gaps make it harder for us to make decisions about if, when, and how to parent, or escape situations of family or domestic violence–resulting in direct threats to our safety, wellbeing, and agency over our lives and our families. NAPAWF will not rest until AAPI women’s wage gaps cease to exist.”


The National Asian Pacific American Women’s Forum (NAPAWF) is the only multi-issue, progressive, community organizing and policy advocacy organization for Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) women and girls in the U.S. NAPAWF’s mission is to build collective power so that all AAPI women and girls can have full agency over our lives, our families, and our communities. You can learn more at and follow us on Facebook and Twitter @NAPAWF.