Representative Grace Meng (D-NY) introduced a bill on July 30 that would explore creating a museum dedicated to the history and culture of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in Washington D.C.
The legislation would create a commission, made up of eight people with backgrounds in Asian American and Pacific Islander studies or museum-planning, to the examine the prospect of creating the museum. This commission would develop a fundraising plan, figure out the cost of acquiring collections, identify potential sites for the museum, and eventually submit a plan of action to Congress. The legislation gives the commission eighteen months to complete this study.
Congresswoman Meng told Huffpost that many Americans are unaware of the contributions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders to the country and that narratives about these communities are largely misunderstood. In a press release she said, “We need to weave the narrative of Asian American and Pacific Islander communities into the greater American story. I firmly believe the story of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders is sorely misunderstood and creating a national museum would ensure that our experiences—both good and bad—are recognized by all Americans.”