Middleeasterners Underserved

Middleeasterners Underserved

                       PRESENTATION TO 
                       AFFAIRS (OTRA) 



                 JULY 14. 1994 SAN FRANCISCO 

                    OF THE UNITED STATES 

                    BY:   SARAH YERAKAKA 


* Middle Eastern/Near Eastern (Middle East is the modern  term of Near 
East). it includes:  Afghan. ArAb iincluding  the AraJblc speaking 
populations of North Africa), Armenian,  Cypriot (Turkish), Iranian, 
Israeli (Oriental). Kurdish.  Palestinian, Turkish (including the Turkic 
speaking  populations of the old Ottoman empire geographical  
boundaries), and other populations from the Middle East  region, 

                   Near  eastern Alliance 
                 Walnut  Creek,  CA   94596 

              Phone or  FAX:    1-510-933-4215 

                        July 14, 1994 

Dear Members of the Office of information and Regulatory Affairs: 

On behalf of the Near Eastern Alliance Board of Directors. I  would lika 
to present some issues that are creating some  barriers for the Middle 
Eastern population in the United  States.  These issues are making the 
human services delivery  system inaccessible to many needy individuals 
of Middle  Eastern oigin. 

This presentation wi11 address the fol 1owing: 

1. Defining underserved populations. 

2. Research result. 

3, Comparative human services delivery systems. 

4. Recommendations. 

Underserved populations 

Any professional in the field of human services in the U.S.  is well 
aware of the importance of the "need factors"  identified by the U.M. 
Census Bureau. Therefore. the  definition Qf underserved populatiQns are 
the sub-groups of  population whQ is not identified by the U.S. Census 
in the  "Short Form". 

For the purpose of clarification, let us compare the "White"  block with 
that of another block that has identifications of  sub-groups In the 
short form of the census count.  Although  the "White" block includes 
individuals of Western European:  EaStern European: and Middle Eastern 
origins, there is no  identification of separate sub-groups for the 
"White" block.   if we were to compare the "Asian" block, we find the  
following sub-Groups:  Chinese, japansse; Vietnamese;  Korean; 
Phillippino; etc. 

We are in the 1990's. but the Census Bureau is still  employing methcds 
of populations identification fit for the  1960's and 1970'~. despite 
the fact that the U.S. has  received millions of legal immigrants and 
refuees from the  Middle East. aed the former ~oviet Union.  Ignoring 
the  United States' demographic char~ges that occurred during the  late 
1970's. 1980'~, ~ 1990's due to the political unrest in  the Middle 
East. and the collapse of the Soviet Union~ will  allow these new 
unidantified sub-iJroups of the "White"  populations to remain an 
underserved segm~ents of the United  States population. 

The U.S. spends billions of dollar~ each year on the socio  economic 
need of this society.  Unfortu~at~ly the present  rules and regulations 
of "Affirmative Action" do not provide  any flexibility to demogTaphic 
changes.  Presently there are  millions of U.S. "legal" immiirFants and 
refugees who are  unaIDle to access the human services delivery system 
because  the method of population count by the U.S. Census beau is  
stagnated.  '*Equal Rights" and "Equal Opportunities" exis~  in this 
society. only to the identified populations in the  census count,  HQw 
can an underserved and invisible  population, like that of the 
unidentified Middle Eastern  population has an "equal opportunity" under 
the present  system? 

Test Results Of needs Asessment 

Since the Middle Eastern population is a sub-group of the  White 
population without available data of need factors  identification by the 
U.S. Census ~au, it became nesessary  to measure the available outreach 
and referral services  prQvided the health. social, and vocational 
services to the  general public and/or minority groups in contrast to 
that of the Middle  Eastern population.  Tne following are the results: 

For the Health Services. Pearson chi~quare indicates that  there is a 
significant difference (P R 0.051) between those  who outreach the 
general public and/or minority groups  (77.38 percent) and those who 
Qutreach the Middle Eastern  population (21,43 percent) to the extent 
that the result  suggests that "although outreach ser~ices are available 
t0  the general public and/or minority groups, outreac~ to the  Middle 
Eastern population by the health services delivery  system is generally 
not e mp 1 oyed." 

For the Social Serv~ces, Pearson chi~square indicates that  there is a 
significant difference (P =0.012) between those  who outreach the 
general public and/or minority groups  (58.04 percent) and those who 
outreach the Middle Eastern  population (33.70 percent) to the extent 
that the result suggest  that "although outreach ~ervlces are available 
to the  general public and/or minority groups, outreach tQ the  Middle 
Eastern population by the social services delivery  system is generally 
not e mp 1 oyed," 

For the Vocational services, Pearson chi~quare indicates  that there is 
a significant difference (P ~ 0.004) between  those who outreach the 
general public and/Qr minority groups  (79.3 percent)and those who 
outreach the Middle Eastern  population ('26.09 percent) to the extent 
that the result  suggest that "although outreach services are available 
to  the general public and/or minQrity groups, outreach to the  Middle 
Eastern population by the vocational services  delivery system is 
generally not employed." 

Tnis study documented the significant differential  percentage of the 
perceived need verses the availability of  services for the Middle 
Eastern population in accordance to  the service providers feedback in 
five Bay Area Counties.  (Yeraka & Sung, 1993).  Please see Exhibit "A"  
for more  details. 

Ccmparative }-Human, Services Del~very Syst~ems 

I have been living in the U.S. s~nce 1974.  Prior to that I  have lived 
zn Australia for 15 years.  During my Fesidency  In Australia. the 
migration policy was opened to "White"  populations only, but aftel* the 
Vietnamese Boat people in  the latter part of the 1970's, Australia has 
opened its  immigration policy to all races.  I often wondered how  
Australia has dealt with its multicultural issues?  During  my recent 
visit to Australia, I found that availability of  human servlces ~s 
inclusive to all its constituents. 

Please find enclosed copies of some brochures regarding the  delivery 
system of human services in Australia.  It might be  interesting to 
compare languages availability for outreach  and referral services in PR 
229.9301 - January. 1993 (10  languages) to that of languages 
availaility in PR 230.9311 - November., 1993, (16 languages).  It is 
obvious that the  Australian system automatically adds languages as it 
may  deem to be necessary.  Why has the United States Human  Services 
delivery system failed to provide equal outreach  and referral services 
to all its constituents?  Please see  Exhibit"B" for more details. 


The present system of the U.S. census count is not inclusive  in its 
identificatiQn Of needs factors to the population at  large.  The 
present system calls for a television of the  "White" block in the short 
form.  It is recommended that the  Census Bureau revise the "Short Form" 
so that identification  of the "White" three sub-group populations may 
be made  possible:  (1) Western European; (2) Eastern European; ~ (3)  
Middle Eastern. 

Bureaucrats of the Human Services delivery system - health,  social and 
vocational. should change the philosophy Of their  responsibilities.  
They should extend their horizQn and  responsibilities frQm that of only 
interpreting the rules  ~nd regulations, to that of interpreting the 
rules and  regulations in addition to proposing changes as soon as the  
needs arise. 

Since the research results indicate that the primary needs  of the 
Middle Eastern population are presently unmet,  spanning from 
prevention, outreach, and education to  treatment and reh~ilitation.  
The Near Eastern Alliance  would like to recommeed that the Office of 
Information and  Regulatory Affairs evaluate the presenteEl issues and 
make  the necessary recommendatiQns to the Executive Office of the  
President, so that the present underserved Middle Eastern  population, 
and other sub-groups of the "White~' population  may have equal 
opportunities in this society. 

Thank you for your time. 

Feds hear testimony for census diversity 

Debate in S.F. over ethnic categories 


     SAN FRANCISCO -- As more than 30 people testified on  the mat ter 
of ra.ce and ethnicity at a federa2 hearing  Thursday. two things be. 
came clear.

     One. that when the numbers are sma11 there is vast  support for 
allowing individual ethnic groups to define  themselves in the next 
national census.

    But the second point -- how to redefine virtually  everybody -- will 
likely need much more debate if  substantative changes to roe a 
categories are to be made.

    Testimony before the Office of Management and Budget on  Directive 
15, the statistical standards used by the Census  Bureau and all federal 
government reporting, ranged from a  call for new "boxes" on the forms 
for multiracial or  multiethnic respondents to doing away with "white" 
as a  category altogoth, or. The OMB is already preparing to  test some 
of the technical aspects of the testimony that  came out of Thursday's 
hearing, the third of four  nationwide.

    But the more substantative decisions on how to track  Anerica are on 
a tight two-year timeline if a new form, and  perhaps a new America, is 
10 emerge in the 2000 census.

    While much testimony focused on broad questions of  identity, there 
was overhelming support for a plan to move  native Hawaiians from the 
Asian/Pacific Islander category on  government fonns to the indigenous 
category with Native  Americans and Alaska natives.

      "We're not Asian, nor are we migrants to  America" said Clinton   
Heleniki, a native Hawaiian.

      For the first time, OMB's chief statistician, Katherine Wallinart, 
also heard testimony asking that:  American Samoans be added to the 
native category.

     Several Arab-American groups asked for a Middle Easterner 
subcategory. Many cited discrimination and  inadequate health data 

    "We am in the 1990s but the Census BUreau is still employing methods 
... fit for the 1960s or 1970s,'.' said  Sarah Yeraka, founder of the 
Walnut Creek-based Near Eastern  Alliance. She joined others in raising 
concerns about  discrimination in health, social services and jobs.     

    The  massive  demographic changes that are taking place  open the 
door for discrim nation, according to legal experts testifying Thursday, 
But without sufficient data, it can be difficult to identify whether 
discrimination is based on race, etlhnicity or, as several suggested, 
simply the color of the skin.

    Larry Shinagawa, a research associate representing the  Center for 
Census Information and Services, contended that  categories created for 
the 2000 census count should in,  elude the growing number of 
interracial people. He estimated  that 23 percent of California's 
children are of mixed race  or ethnic parentage.

--              trh trh trh trh trh

Newsgroups: soc.culture.arabic
From: (trh trh)
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Date: Wed, 20 Jul 1994 01:21:44 GMT

Editor: Ali B. Ali-Dinar
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