Contact: Carissa Villacorta
Executive Director / 202-262-0772

For Immediate Release

NAFFAA Grieves with Family of Nurse Maria Ambrocio

The beloved frontliner succumbed to her injuries and head trauma after a mentally ill homeless person struck her down on Times Square

New York, NY (October 11, 2021) The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) grieves with the family of Maria Ambrocio, our kababayan from Bayonne, New Jersey. She died after suffering head trauma from being struck by a deranged individual who was being chased after grabbing a mobile phone from someone near Times Square. This is the latest addition to a series of violent acts committed by mentally ill individuals against members of our Filipino Community. Since January of this year, there have been a number of cases of our “manong” and “manang” violently assaulted by individuals with mental health issues.

Maria had just finished visiting with the Philippine Consulate General in New York when the incident happened. After being knocked down last Friday afternoon, she was on life support until her passing this Sunday morning. Maria was a healthcare frontline worker. She was one of the noble 150,000 Filipino nurses who are leading our battle against COVID-19. Authorities are still investigating if this is an issue of an “Anti-Asian hate crime,” however, one thing for sure is that our Filipino community must take a solid stand and effort to protect our senior citizens wherever they are around the country. 

NAFFAA Chairman Brendan Flores commented, “This climate of violence and hatred against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders must come to an end; people of all ethnicities and nationalities have the right to exist without fear.” Flores added, “We call on elected officials and public servants to take concrete action and bring comfort to those afflicted.”

“We second the Philippine Consulate General of New York’s invitations for authorities to 'take the necessary steps, including heightened police visibility, to protect the public after a surge in anti-Asian hate incidents that targeted some of our kababayan.' NAFFAA also supports the call for authorities and officials to take the necessary steps to address mental health issues, especially among the homeless,” he added.

To learn more about what to do when encountering or witnessing a hate act, please click here.


About NaFFAA

The National Federation of Filipino American Associations (NaFFAA) is a nonprofit, non-partisan organization. Established in 1997, NaFFAA promotes the welfare and well-being of the four million Filipinos and Filipino Americans throughout the United States. NaFFAA's vision is to serve as the voice of all Filipinos and Filipino Americans by uniting, engaging, and empowering diverse individuals and community organizations through leadership development, civic engagement, and national advocacy.