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The Student News Site of San Francisco State University

Golden Gate Xpress

The Student News Site of San Francisco State University

Golden Gate Xpress

Student organizations at SFSU plan mobilizations in SF in protest of APEC

The League of Filipino Students at SFSU and other student organizations in the No to APEC coalition will protest the APEC summit on Nov. 12 and 15
Michaela Mateo
The League of Filipino Students and Haüs BlàQue hosted together a “No2Apec” prop build forum on Nov. 6, 2023, where they educated students on the issues of the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation and made signs to picket in the upcoming series of rallies in San Francisco. (Michaela Mateo / Golden Gate Xpress)

Student organizations that agreed to rally behind the No to APEC (Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation) coalition held a forum on Nov. 6 in Rosa Parks Conference Room A-C to educate students on APEC and its effects while preparing them for upcoming protests on Nov. 12 and 15.

Young Democratic Socialists of America, Haüs BlàQue, Movimiento Estudiantil para Liberación de las Américas and League of Filipino Students at San Francisco State University were part of the forum.

“Today, we gather not just LFS members but also other student orgs like YDSA, Haüs BlàQue and MELA because we wanted to learn together and prepare ourselves for confronting the politicians or corporations at APEC and also organizing beyond APEC,” DJ Chan, chairperson of LFS said.

According to Chan, heads of states from 21 nations will come to the APEC summit.

Wesley Ueunten, a professor and department chair of Asian American Studies, added that APEC first started in the late ‘80s with the idea of making free trade between nations in the Asian-Pacific region easier.

“I think it can be bad when you make it easier for free trade, but at the same time, you lead to the displacement of many people along with the liberalization and deregulation loss of protections for workers and marginalized people,” Ueunten said.

According to Chan, APEC’s trade deals will exploit workers and put developing countries at greater risk of being in debt. The problem with that summit being hosted in San Francisco is that it will remove funds from the city.

“The Mayor, London Breed, is spending a lot of public funds to increase security, SFPD and also to host lavish parties or dinners for these heads of state,” Chan said. “So it’s really taking away tax money that could be used for social services, for food programs, for housing programs, even programs like Gator Groceries is supported by the city that could have been utilized for us students rather than actually spending on these politicians who make so much money.”

As someone who grew up in Hawaii and has roots in Okinawa, Ueunten knows how tourism can drive money into a city.

“For the city with this, the promise that it’s going to bring a lot of dollars, it’s good for tourism so we’re going to have all these people come in,” Ueunten said. “But, is it worth it? In Okinawa and Hawaii, the money comes in but it filters out quickly.”
According to Ueunten, the summit will benefit larger businesses related to tourism. However, he does not see the long-term benefits that regular workers get out of the summit.

In Annex 1 at SFSU, there will be a summit hosted by the League of Filipino Students on Nov. 11 called People and Planet over Profit and Plunder: the Peoples’ Counter Summit.

According to an Instagram post from the League of Filipino Students, “Attendees will hear about the grassroots efforts of workers, migrants, youth, women, and many more.”

The mobilizations in San Francisco are scheduled to take place at noon on Nov. 12 at the Embarcadero Plaza and on Nov. 15. The times and locations may change.

“I’m in support of them. I’ve learned a lot from the League of Filipino Students,” Ueunten said. “They’re really putting themselves on the line. Coming out of Asian American studies, which is part of the College of Ethnic Studies, that’s what we stand for right?”

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About the Contributors
Samantha Morales
Samantha Morales, Campus Editor
Samantha Morales (she/her) is this semester's campus editor for Golden Gate Xpress, where previously she was a reporter. She is now a fourth-year journalism major and minor in criminal justice studies at SF State. After she graduates from SF State, she hopes to report on crime in the Bay Area or from her hometown. Samantha is originally from Selma, California, but went to school at Fresno City College before transferring to SF State. At Fresno City College, she was previously the News and Entertainment editor for the college’s student-run news publication, The Rampage. In her free time, she enjoys working out, whether it is at home or a gym. She also enjoys painting and building Lego sets when she is not working on a story
Michaela Mateo
Michaela Mateo, Visuals Editor
Michaela Gutierrez Mateo (She/Her) is the Golden Gate Xpress Visuals Editor for Fall 2023. Her nickname is Micha, is a 4th year Photojournalism major and an Asian American Studies minor. She is a transfer student from Chabot College, Hayward where she had her first experience as a reporter for The Spectator. Her passion is photography and film but most of all she is a Kdrama and Kpop addict.

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