KIWA’s mission is to empower Koreatown’s low-wage immigrant workers for dignity and respect in the workplace and community, and to work together with other communities to realize a vision of a just Los Angeles that works for everyone. As one of Los Angeles’ most unequal local economies, the struggles of the Koreatown’s low-wage immigrant workers point to the core problems in our society and systems, as well as offer up potential solutions. Koreatown is an important battleground in the struggle to create a more equitable city.
KIWA is one of the nation’s most established workers centers and one of the few community groups organizing Korean workers in the country. Our model brings together workers from targeted local low-wage industries with community members and students in a broad, multi-ethnic vision for social justice. Our strategies include grassroots organizing and leadership development, strategic industry-based campaigns that target employers directly, advocacy, and multi-ethnic coalition building.
KIWA was created in 1992 out of the ashes of the Los Angeles Civil Unrest, often considered the nation’s first multi-racial riot. In a city torn with racism, poverty, and inequality, KIWA started with the mission to address the worker exploitation rampant in the Koreatown community among both Korean and Latino workers, and committed to struggling in solidarity with other communities for a more just Los Angeles.Visit Website