Asian Americans Advancing Justice - LA

Building upon the legacy of the Asian Pacific American Legal Center

Women’s History Month at Advancing Justice-LA: Yanin Senachai

Thursday, March 15th 2018
Yanin Senachai
Yanin is a staff attorney at Asian Americans Advancing Justice - Los Angeles. Her full bio is found here

How did you first get started working in this field?
After college, I worked at nonprofits serving battered Asian immigrant women. I learned how economic insecurity posed one of the greatest barriers to immigrant women escaping from abusive partners.  Immigrant workers, especially those who are limited English proficient, cannot earn a decent living because they are limited to jobs where they are paid less than the minimum wage.  I see my job as a workers’ rights attorney at Advancing Justice- LA as fighting the oppression of immigrants as an underclass.
What woman inspires you and why?
 I am inspired by Denise Menchaca, San Gabriel’s first Latina Councilmember.  Menchaca recently voted to rescind an agreement between the San Gabriel police chief and ICE. It was a courageous decision towards keeping community members safe from retaliatory enforcement actions by the Trump administration.
What does it mean to be a woman in social justice?
As with every field, a woman in social justice has to be just as vigilant at fighting sexism, homophobia, and racism in her profession, as in the broader community.  It also means having the responsibility to reach out and mentor newer advocates, including those from other unrepresented communities, who will face the same barriers.
Why is it important to have women in leadership roles?
We progress and innovate ideas for social change when decision-making factors in different perspectives.  Historically, society has denied women leadership positions because of gender roles.  But women should influence policy that impacts them and the communities they want to protect.


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Advancing Justice - LA’s hotlines prioritize assistance to low-income persons in the following areas of law: family, immigration, consumer, public benefits, employment, housing, and civil rights.

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Our mission is to advocate for civil rights, provide legal services and education, and build coalitions to positively influence and impact Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders and to create a more equitable and harmonious society.