The City of Austin has launched the Asian American Quality of Life Initiative. The initiative, in response to a City Council resolution, aims to assess the overall experience of Austin’s diverse Asian community and level of awareness and access to City services.
Phase one of the initiative begins with a comprehensive survey being done in partnership with The University of Texas at Austin’s School of Social Work. Dr. Yuri Jang is the lead researcher for this survey, which aims to include 2,500 participants and will continue until the end of the year. Results from the quantitative research will help shape a series of guided community discussions to explore successes and challenges impacting overall quality of life for Asians in Austin.
Asians represent the fastest growing racial group in Austin with Indians, Chinese, Vietnamese, Koreans, and Filipinos making up the largest segments of the population. An estimated 110,000 to 115,000 Asians live in metropolitan Austin. The Asian community is doubling in size approximately every 12 years.
“Diversity – in all of its forms – is vital to the success of any community. We wouldn’t be the special City that we are without the contributions of our growing Asian population, and we have a responsibility to fully understand and address the challenges they might face in fully participating as members of our community,” said City Manager Marc Ott. “We recognize the incredible diversity within the local Asian-American community and have sought to build an initiative that will be fully inclusive for anyone that wants to share their hopes and vision for the future.”
The initiative will develop a community scorecard that assesses health and service needs. It will also provide recommendations to the City Manager, Mayor and Council to enhance or create new City services, programs or practices to address key issues identified in the survey and guided community discussions.