Environmental testing
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2014.036.003 Oral History Interview with Chris Chan May 24, 2004

Chris Chan is a Chinese immigrant who works for the Chinese Progressive Association (CPA). Born in China, Chris moved to Macau at two years of age following the Communist takeover of China. During his young adult years, he worked as a construction laborer in Hong Kong during the 1970s and 80s construction boom before being sponsored by his sister to immigrate to the United States in 1984. Chris describes the various construction and labor jobs he took on in the early years, the differences between New York City, Chinatown, and Hong Kong, and the challenges he faced as he tried to learn the English language. Chris would become active at the CPA in 1989 and would work for them as an employee in 1992. Chris elaborates on his work at the CPA, emphasizing its services to the local community, including but not limited to immigration rights, citizenship exam and procedure guidance, English classes, local environmental issues, and improving overall community health. In 2002, Chris and the CPA surveyed 580 people in the Chinatown area to study the effects of pollution on the local community and its correlation to asthma symptoms. He states that the CPA attempts to raise awareness of air pollution and dispel misconceptions of asthma in the Chinese community living in Chinatown through an emphasis on educating the population using their study. Chris notes that the 9/11 attack compounded the air quality issues but there are many pre-existing factors that needed addressing to improve quality of life. The discussion following his description of the CPA survey includes their plans to utilize the survey data to continue to educate the populace and to convince other organizations to assist in improving air quality in the Chinatown area.