Hello Friends and Members,
Salga NYC is an all volunteer run organization and receives a great amount of support from the community. Our board consists of various chairs who manage programs and events for the core functions that Salga serves today. We require dedicated individuals who are able to commit 3 – 5 hours per week as volunteers and being able to attend our once a month in-person meetings (second Thursday from 7 pm – 9 pm every month).
We are looking for leaders to join as board chairs for the following roles:
Political Chair – Taking lead on political protests and advocacy events important to the South Asian Queer community in NYC. This would involve fostering discussions and being able to be the point of contact for various events as they come up.
Fundraising Chair – Coming up with ideas related to fundraising for Salga NYC per calendar year. This would involve looking at budgets from individual chairs and coordinating with the Finance Chair to see where the needs are. We are looking for creative individuals who would be responsible for coming up with fundraising petitions and events to continue the great programs we have in place.
Events Chair – Keeping a list of venues, volunteers, and logistical information related to events planned for Salga NYC. This individual would collaborate with the Fundraising Chair, come up with ideas to market our events and programs, and also be able to take into consideration whether our events and programs comply with accessibility, queer and trans* friendly, and other concerns to make all members of our community feel welcome and safe.
Co-Finance Chair – Being point of contact for Salga’s bank account and being able to update the board on our account balances, managing our checkbook, reporting on how funds were allocated throughout the year, and handling reimbursement.
Communications Chair – Checking Salga’s social media and email and being able to direct communications within the board. This individual would be responsible for sending out mass emails through our listserv for upcoming events and programs while also collaborating with our other Communications Chair to update the website.
If you are interested in joining the board, please send an email to email@example.com with your area of interest.
In celebration of women’s history month, spring’s arrival, and Holi festivities – Salga NYC presents our spring fundraiser party on March 22nd, 2014!
$15 suggestion donation
Midnight Happy Hour drink specials!
DJ DynAMITe in the house.
All proceeds will go to Pride 2014!
Date: Saturday, March 22nd 2014
Time: 10:30 pm – 4:00 am
Location: M Lounge on 62 Thomas Street New York, NY
Dear SALGA NYC Members and Friends,
We are writing to express our concern with the Black Party that The Saint At Large will be hosting on March 22nd. The annual dance/performance/kink party this year has a South Asian/Hindu theme, and fetishizes several cultural icons, including Hindu deities, which we see as a larger phenomenon of exotification of South Asian symbols and dress in writing, art, henna, yoga, and other art forms and practices. While the views in our community are as diverse as our members and as such there is no singular position that reflects even the members of our board, many of us are offended at the appropriation of South Asian symbols by largely non-South Asian event-planners.
We wrote about our concerns to The Saint at Large, and while they sent us back a thoughtful reply, they did not address our overarching problem with their party, namely that their appropriation of South Asian symbols and deities is Othering and problematic.
In their response to us, they said they chose to use South Asian and Hindu iconography as a way to make their party less Eurocentric. They justified their choice of the theme by saying that that many other people and groups that are not South Asian use South Asian symbols.
We feel that their attempt to make their parties less Eurocentric by appropriating South Asian iconography actually has the opposite effect. It makes potential South Asian party-goers uncomfortable at the least and offended at worst. Furthermore, the fact that others have misappropriated South Asian symbols in the past (and continue to do this) does not make the practice legitimate, rather each additional instance increases the problems of discrimination that our community members already face.
The Saint at Large also said exotification (of India, in this case) is the same as eroticization, and is necessary for fetishization. This is simply not true. Fetish, like other practices and art forms like writing, dancing, and music, exists within global power structures. Brown bodies have long been sources of fascination and exotification by Western audiences, as many activists and scholars have documented over the past several decades. The fact that fetish is a sexual practice does not erase its position within global power structures and historical contexts of colonialism and neocolonialism. Certainly, the India-inspired party would have been different if it had been designed for and by queer South Asians. The fetishization of South Asian symbols and religious icons would not have been exotification. Of course, varying privileges and power structures exist within the South Asian community as well, and this is not meant to erase those structures, but rather to contextualize The Saint At Large’s appropriation of South Asian icons.
We hope that in the future, The Saint at Large is more conscious of the historical context and existing global power hierarchies within which symbols, decorations, and fetish operate. As a queer South Asian organization-who are, coincidentally, collaborating in a fetish workshop this coming week with other Asian queer groups-we fully support the idea behind fetish parties, queer parties, and other forms of kink, but we are troubled when other queer groups marginalize, exotify and offend our community in pursuit of queering spaces. We also urge the Saint at Large promoters to engage in active dialogue with our community regarding this year’s party in order to find ways to engage these symbols and themes more thoughtfully.
Call to Action:
We urge community members (and our allies) to voice your opinions by contacting The Saint at Large by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
SALGA NYC – Serving the Desi Queer Community of New York
On Sunday 3/30 from 4-6pm, The SALGA NYC Book Club meets to discuss:
“EAST, WEST” BY SALMAN RUSHDIE:
• “One of the decade’s great literary triumphs: magical, compassionate, wise, beautiful, and so very entertaining.” —The Toronto Star
• “Richly imaginative…The characters are memorable, the language swift, and the reader is touched by desire, friendship and love.” —The Globe and Mail
• “A pleasure to read…The stories in East, West have the careful precision of ivory miniatures. And all of them, beneath their infectiously playful surfaces ponder the imponderables of human fate.” —Macleans’s
Please join us as we discuss this selection over snacks & beverages; and feel free to bring your favorite snack or beverage as well. For this month’s venue location and contact information, please send an email to:
GAPIMNY, Q-WAVE, SALGA and the National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance are hosting the Community Catalyst Awards Celebration on Saturday, March 29, 2014 at Salaam Bombay, 319 Greenwich Street, in New York City. We are writing to ask if you would serve on the host committee for this gala. There are two levels.
Host Committee Gold – Sell Full Table of 8 guests or Donate $500
Host Committee Silver – Sell Half Table of 4 guests or Donate $250
Individual tickets are $65. All Host Committee members are listed in the program books and also receive a complimentary ad.
We are hoping to bring together the LGBT Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community of Greater New York. This year we hope to honor the following who have improved the lives of LGBT AAPIs with the 2014 Community Catalyst Awards:
- Q-WAVE – For ten years, Q-WAVE has strengthened the voices of lesbian, bisexual and queer women and trans/ gender variant people of Asian descent in the Greater New York area.
- Andy Marra – Andy Marra is a nationally recognized advocate and role model for LGBT people, the Korean community, adoptees, and young people everywhere.
All Host Committee members are listed in the program book and email invitations. Alternatively, you can take out an advertisement in the dinner’s program book. Ads range from $50 for a quarter page ad to $250 for a full page. Tickets and ads can be purchased here: https://org2.salsalabs.com/o/7100/p/salsa/event/common/public/?event_KEY=69593
Proceeds benefit the hosting organizations to support their programs and activities throughout the year.
On Tuesday, February 11 we will have a Host Committee Kick Off at 6:30 PM at Salaam Bombay, 319 Greenwich Street, in TriBeCa. We’ll talk more about the event, provide materials, and provide whatever help you need to sell tickets. We hope you can join support us.
If you have any questions, please contact me at 917-439-3158 or email email@example.com.
Glenn D. Magpantay, National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA)
Jason Tseng, Gay Asian & Pacific Islander Men of New York (GAPIMNY)
Stephanie Hsu, QWAVE
Anu Singh, SALGA NYC
The National Queer Asian Pacific Islander Alliance (NQAPIA) is a federation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) Asian American, South Asian, Southeast Asian, and Pacific Islander (AAPI) organizations. We seek to build the organizational capacity of local LGBT AAPI groups, develop leadership, promote visibility, educate our community, enhance grassroots organizing, expand collaborations, and challenge homophobia and racism. NQAPIA is a project of the Tides Center in San Francisco, CA.
Founded in 1990, the Gay Asian Pacific Islander Men of New York (GAPIMNY) is an all-volunteer, membership-based organization whose goal is to empower gay, bisexual, queer and questioning Asian and Pacific Islander (API) men and transgender folks through a range of social, educational, peer-support, cultural, and political activities. We work in coalition with other community organizations to help educate the API ethnic and LGBTQ communities on issues of race, sexuality, gender, and health.
Q-WAVE is dedicated to strengthening the voices of lesbian/bisexual/queer women and trans/gender variant people of Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Islander descent. Since 2004, we have been building a supportive, progressive community by promoting visibility and empowerment through social, political, and educational organizing. Our name reflects the fluidity of the identity and individuality of queer ASAPI people, our lives, and our places in society.
SALGA NYC serves to promote awareness, tolerance, acceptance, empowerment and safe spaces for sexual minorities and people of all gender identities, who trace their heritage to South Asia or who identify as South Asian.