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New Acquisition: Chinese Progressive Association Historical Records

Friday, February 1, 2008
Archives and Special Collections Department
archives [at]
(617) 373-2351
Archives and Special Collections

New Acquisition: Chinese Progressive Association Historical Records

Northeastern University Libraries is pleased to announce the acquisition of the historical records of Boston's Chinese Progressive Association, a grassroots community organization that works for full equality and empowerment of the Chinese community in Boston and beyond.

Founded on July 17, 1977 in Boston's Chinatown, the Chinese Progressive Association (CPA) supports adult education, civic empowerment, workers rights, youth leadership, and community information and referral services. It also participates in citywide and regional coalitions, including the Asian Pacific American Agenda Coalition, Boston Tenant Coalition, Civic Engagement Initiative, Fair Wage Campaign, Immigrant Workers Center Collaborative, New Majority, and Whose Boston. Among its early activities, the CPA helped found the Chinatown Housing and Land Development Task Force, worked with other activists to conduct voter registration and organize the first mayoral candidates forum in Chinatown, and joined African American and Latino community leaders to file a successful lawsuit against gerrymandering of state electoral districts. In 1986, CPA organized with dislocated garment workers from P&L Sportswear and from Beverly Rose, another sportswear manufacturer, to win the first Chinese bilingual retraining programs in New England. The following year, the CPA Workers Center was established to continue organizing immigrant workers to advocate for their rights. In 1993, CPA worked with other Chinatown organizations and the American Friends Service Committee to organize a plebiscite on the Parcel C parking garage proposed for the center of residential Chinatown, eventually winning the designation of the parcel for community development. More recently, in 2005 the organization launched its Immigrant Workers Center Collaborative to build immigrant worker organizing and solidarity in the Chinese, Brazilian, and Latino communities. In 2006, CPA strengthened ties with communities of color, tenant organizations, and housing advocates to secure changes in Boston's Inclusionary Development Policy and its definition of housing affordability in an effort to stabilize Boston neighborhoods.

The 19 linear feet of material dates from 1977-2005 and includes board and committee minutes, correspondence, grant proposals, newsletters, press clippings, and audio/visual material.

This rich collection contributes to the University Archives and Special Collection Department's collecting focus on records of private, non-profit, community-based organizations that are concerned with social justice issues. View a list of all collections available for research in the NU Archives and Special Collections Department.

Archival Collections