GOPIO Members, during a reception hosted in honor of the first Indian American Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal in New York on Nov. 3rd, 2017. Several community issues were discussed at the meeting including the current anti-immigrant atmosphere, H1-B Visa, DACA and Dreamers.
Rep. Jayapal emphasized the importance of everyone getting involved in the political process. Congresswoman Pramila Jayapal elected in 2016 election, represents Washington’s 7th District. She is the Vice Ranking Member of the House Budget Committee and also serves on the House Judiciary Committee and the Subcommittee on Immigration and Border Security.
Congresswoman Jayapal is committed to ensuring that every resident of the district has economic opportunity; fairness and equity; and safe and healthy communities. She is proud of the district’s role in leading the country on issues like the minimum wage, racial equity and innovation, and will work to support that work and lift it up as a model for the rest of the country.
Her focus is on ensuring income equality; access to education, from early learning to higher education, including debt-free college; expanding Social Security and Medicare; protecting our environment for our next generation; and ensuring immigrant, civil and human rights for all.
Jayapal will relentlessly challenge systems that corrupt our democracy, pushing for campaign finance reform, tax reform, voting rights and an end to institutionalized racism. In all of these endeavors, she’ll continue to build the movement to expand our democracy and create the political space for policy change that benefits working families and responsible businesses.
The first Indian-American woman in the House of Representatives, Jayapal has spent the last twenty years working internationally and domestically as a leading national advocate for women’s, immigrant, civil, and human rights.
She came to the United States by herself at the age of 16 to attend college at Georgetown University and later received her MBA from Northwestern University. She has worked in a number of industries in both the public and private sector.
Jayapal was elected to the Washington State Senate in 2014, becoming the first South Asian American ever elected to the State Legislature and the only woman of color in the Washington State Senate. As a Washington State Senator, serving in a Republican majority Senate, Jayapal fought for gender equity, expanded access to contraceptives for all women, including those on Medicaid, and introduced legislation to increase the statewide minimum wage and provide free community college. She stood up to members of her own party against giveaways to predatory payday lenders, and secured $5.25 million into transportation pre-apprenticeship programs for women and people of color. She played a leading role in the push to pass the Washington State Voting Rights Act – blocked, unfortunately, by the Republican majority in the State Senate. She received a Champion award from the Children’s Alliance for her work on ensuring equity as the state invested millions into early learning.