P&G Honors Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month — Through Action
This Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Heritage Month, we take the opportunity to celebrate and recognize the contributions and influence of the AAPI community-- one of the fastest growing and most diverse groups in the US.
As part of P&G’s ongoing advocacy for equality and inclusion, we are stepping up for the AAPI community by taking meaningful action to bring awareness to the important issues of the community and to elevate our partners providing much needed support.
Creating Belonging, Starting With A Name
Continuing its ongoing advocacy for equality and inclusion, and to help address rising levels of bias against the AAPI community, P&G is releasing its latest film, “The Name,” as part of an integrated campaign to inspire conversation and encourage people to learn how to say AAPI names, because feeling a sense of belonging in society starts with one’s name.
Everyone has a name — and from birth through a lifetime of introductions, it becomes the cornerstone of our identity. For many AAPIs, their given names carry an even deeper history and significance. But bias, indifference, and even unintentional mistakes can lead to mispronunciation, misidentification and create barriers within communities.
Through the film along with educational resources and tools at www.pg.com/names, the Company hopes to elevate the importance of a name, and how meaningful gestures — like pronunciation and understanding its meaning — can create a greater sense of belonging for us all.
“The Name” quickly chronicles the life of a Korean American girl named Yeong Joo [yUHng-ju], taking the audience on a journey from the day she is born, to an uncomfortable situation at school. While completely unintentional, the simple action of having her name mispronounced causes Yeong Joo to feel alienated and dismissed. However, the meaning of Yeong Joo’s name comes to life in the actions of her friends, allies and herself.
In a recent pulse survey conducted by P&G that gauged sentiment around Yeong Joo’s name, an overwhelming majority (78%) of Americans did not recognize “Yeong Joo Park” as a possible American name. Respondents considered familiar Anglo-Saxon names as “American”, drawing a possible connection that individuals without Anglo-Saxon names may more frequently personally experience a degree of othering.
“The Name” aims to raise awareness around the importance of learning and respecting AAPI names. The survey also revealed that an even larger number of respondents (83%) felt that their names held importance and held meaning to their heritage, identity, sense of self, or connection to parents/family. Only 17% of respondents said their name was “not important.”
No one likes to feel like an outsider. The survey furthermore shows that more than half of Americans (53%) have experienced having their name mispronounced - showing that the mispronunciation of names is not a uniquely Asian experience but one that is shared by many people, regardless of race or ethnicity.
The film is launching as part of an integrated campaign that will include digital and social media activities, partnerships with notable organizations and members of the AAPI community as well as educational resources and discussion guides. This program is designed to go beyond simple awareness and equip and enable individuals and communities with tools to create lasting, substantive change.
At P&G, we believe that progress starts by seeing the world with a broader perspective and that’s why this film was deliberately led by Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) cast and crew members. Behind the vision of the film’s strategy was an all-Asian creative team, including members of R/GA’s Asian Voices Culture Collective group, who teamed up with notable Japanese-American Director Goh Iramoto. The film spotlights the honest realities of the AAPI experience today — informed by their lived experiences, cultural identities, and backgrounds.
Supporting Our Partners
P&G continues to provide much-needed support to organizations serving the AAPI community at the local and national level including those providing safety and bystander training, developing AAPI leaders in the workforce, supporting AAPI women and girls, and diversifying media organizations and newsrooms.
We will continue to support these initiatives address the systemic barriers facing the AAPI community.
Advancing Representation and Accurate Portrayal
We know that representation matters so P&G is proud to support the See Us Coming Together: A Sesame Street Special which introduced the first ever Asian American character, Ji-Young. The special also included an opportunity for talking about anti-Asian racism and was an engaging story that encourages empathy, belonging and uplifts AAPI communities.
We are not limiting our actions or commitment to AAPI Heritage Month. We will continue to find ways to celebrate, uplift and support the AAPI community throughout the year.