4/28/2006 Houston -- U.S. Secretary of Labor, Elaine L. Chao visited the Houston Chinese Community Center today to deliver a message to the Asian community in Houston. She and the U.S. Department of Labor is making outreach to minority communities throughout the country a top priority. As the first American woman of Asian descent to serve in a President's Cabinet, Secretary Chao understands the challenges and obstacles these communities face.U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao (left) takes a photo with Houston Chinese Community Center employees (L: Grace Meng, R: Patty Yeu)
Secretary Elaine Chao has made significant contributions to the advancement of Asian Pacific Americans through partnership activities, targeted compliance assistance, human capital development and enhanced enforcement of labor laws.
The Department of Labor and Secretary Chao has helped Asian Pacific Americans in many aspects. To improve the lives of Korean and other Asian Pacific American at-risk youth and young adults, the Labor Department awarded a $1 million grant in California through a competitive process to a coalition of faith-based organizations. The program will enhance the employability of nearly 1,200 participants by providing them with educational and vocational training, counseling, peer support, mentoring, life skills services, and job placement services.Chinese Community Center Board Member Tim Shen with U.S. Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao
To assist Asian Pacific American seniors, the Administration awarded a $6.1 million competitive grant to the National Asian Pacific Center on Aging in Seattle, Washington. Also, recognizing that economic freedom and entrepreneurship are a foundation for individual success and prosperity, the Growing America Through Entrepreneurship Project (Project GATE), allocated $9 million to reach historically underserved ethnic populations and help diverse urban and rural populations create, support and expand small businesses.
To better serve the Asian Pacific American communities, the U.S. Department of Labor's monthly employment report includes, for the first time, specific data on Asian Americans.
Her efforts in the Asian community and her leadership in the U.S. Cabinet are to be commended. She has helped countless people in the Asian communities throughout the United States.
To foster a new generation of leaders and promote diversity in the workforce, Secretary Elaine Chao established an internship program at the U.S. Department of Labor that has benefited over 60 Asian Pacific Americans. Secretary Elaine Chao meets annually with Asian Pacific American interns in the Washington D.C. area to highlight careers in leadership and public service.
Secretary Chao's brief trip to Houston will conclude tonight at the Houston Asian Chamber of Commerce Annual Gala at the Westin Galleria Hotel.Local Chinese artist Ms. Wang Chi gives one of her artworks to Secretary of Labor Elaine Chao at the Houston Chinese Community Center.