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Harnessing the AAPI vote in Southern Nevada

One APIA Nevada voting event
Posted at 10:34 PM, May 29, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-31 18:14:16-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — A growing voting bloc that could make difference in this year’s elections. The Asian American Pacific Islander community has been the fastest growing in Southern Nevada and is becoming a targeted group for potential votes.

“If you don’t actually vote, it’s like you don’t have a voice.”

A voice that Jhane Williamson wants to use. She’s planning to vote early in this year’s primary election After making her final decision.

“I have some persons in my mind already and I’m kind of sticking to what they believe on.”

RELATED STORY: Early voting for primary election underway in Clark County

She’s part of a growing voting bloc in Southern Nevada. Census data shows the AAPI community has grown more than 225% since 2000.

“Every single election, they can make a more significant impact,” Shelby Parks, organizing director for One APIA Nevada, said.

An impact that’s already seen across the country with AAPI voters seeing the highest growth of participation in the 2020 presidential election. To boost efforts, One APIA Nevada is getting the word out about voting by hosting events near voting locations. The nonprofit says the top issues for voters include housing and education.

“The work that we do now is going to be prevalent in our legislative session which is coming up at the beginning of next year,” Parks said.

RELATED STORY: Primary elections: Where Las Vegas locals can cast their votes early

Myrna Brudermann says she would to see more young people be engaged with voting and appreciates the outreach efforts like pamphlets in Tagalog.

“Go get some kind of information. See what each individual [candidate] wants. What each individual needs. What we want,” she said.

One APIA Nevada says so far, they’ve seen an increase of engagement from younger voters.

“The young folks in the community are pretty pumped up and educated on the issues that affect them every day,” Parks said.

Williamson says choosing the leaders of today and tomorrow is a right that should be exercised.

“The ability to vote is like their freedom. So, make the most of it and be heard,” she said.

Early voting for the primaries will continue through June 10 with election day on June 14.