Congressman: Chinese moving from Chinatown to East Harlem
Updated: 2014-04-01 07:38
By AMY HE in New York (China Daily USA)
An increasing number of Chinese and Chinese-Americans are moving out of Chinatown and into East Harlem, reflecting a "dramatic" change in New York City's population, said Congressman Charles Rangel.
Rangel said he has noticed the increasing Chinese population in East Harlem, a neighborhood in upper Manhattan near the Bronx, which is part of his 13th congressional district.
"I'm surprised at the ever-growing number of Chinese that we do have in East Harlem, which is considered the Spanish-speaking Harlem," he said on Monday at a media event. "We can see the impact of the housing shrinking in Chinatown and the migration of Chinese Americans in Manhattan, moving north to my congressional district."
The increase in Chinese residents is small, but it is noticeable in the number of applicants for public and affordable housing, said Rangel. As it relates to luxury housing or high-rental apartments, there is no impact "at all", but "there is no question that we're finding more and more Asians on the waiting list for New York City housing", he added.
When asked about possible conflicts between Chinese residents and Spanish-speaking ones, Rangel said that there aren't any, and then added that while he's not saying it doesn't exist, "it certainly hasn't reached a point where it's been brought to my attention where there have been conflicts between people of different backgrounds".
On immigration, Rangel, a Democrat, said he regularly works with Congresswoman Judy Chu, the Democratic representative of California's 27th congressional district. Rangel is a member of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, where Chu is the chairwoman.
"She's very active in that area of immigration, and of course in education and technology," Rangel said. "She's a new member, but she's a very outgoing and one of our best members."
Rangel is also a proponent of more US-China trade relations, having visited China in early 2013 with other leaders of the Congressional Black Caucus (CBC) to meet with top Chinese government officials. The 10-day trip took the group to Beijing, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, among others.
"We talked about trying to improve our relationship and we talked about many issues that we had in the World Trade Organizations that are not fully discussed," he said. "We have a problem with intellectual property rights, we have a problem with trade currency, but the good thing is that we can talk about these issues, where many years ago, China was not in a position to do so."
As China grows, the country has to know that it's going to be dependent on American imports, so the relationship has to be "a lot closer than it is now if both countries are going to increase their trade", he said.
Rangel will be up for re-election for his 23rd term this June, going up against New York State Senator Adriano Espaillat of upper Manhattan. Harlem-born Rangel has been a member of the House of Representatives since 1971, and now is the third-longest serving member of the House.