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Tea & Justice
NYPD's 1st Asian Women Officers
A film by Ermena Vinluan
2010, 55 minutes, Color, DVD
Order No. W101001
TEA & JUSTICE chronicles the experiences of three women who joined the New York Police Department during the 1980s—the first Asian women to become members of a force that was largely white and predominantly male. In this award-winning documentary, Officer Trish Ormsby and Detectives Agnes Chan and Christine Leung share their fascinating stories about careers and personal lives, as well as satisfactions and risks on the job, the stereotypes they defied, and how they persevered.

Intrigued by the image of Asian women in a non-traditional profession, filmmaker Ermena Vinluan explores her own mixed feelings about cops while honoring the challenges Ormsby, Chan and Leung embraced, and the far-reaching changes they helped bring about. Interviews with ordinary New Yorkers, leading advocates of law enforcement reform, and anti-police abuse activists consider proposed changes in police culture and explain how women’s preventive policing style, based on communication, contrasts with more reactive, physically forceful methods used by men. Humorous cartoons, lively graphics depicting cultural icons of strong Asian women, and original music enhance this nuanced study of race, gender, and power.



AWARDS, FESTIVALS, & SCREENINGS


Queens International Film Festival, Best Documentary
Sacramento Film & Music Film Festival, Audience Award: Best Documentary

  • Beloit International Film Festival
  • Austin Asian International Film Festival
  • Houston Asian Pacific Film Festival

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QUOTES

    “Tea & Justice [proves] that increasing the number of women in policing at all ranks is a strategy to reduce police excessive force, strengthen community policing reform and improve police response to violence against women.”
    Ellie Smeal
    President, Feminist Majority Foundation

    “Demonstrates better than any research study, the critical importance of diversity and gender equity to successful police.”
    David A. Harris
    Author, “Good Cops: The Case for Preventive Policing”

    “A potent recruitment tool for police agencies making their best efforts of outreach to communities of color.”
    Prosy Abarquez-Delacruz, J.D.
    Commissioner Emeritus, L.A. City Civil Service Commission

    “Bold, sensitive, passionate, analytical and iconoclastic…Asian American culture and women can make a difference in the way policing is done.”
    Estella Habal
    Professor, Asian American Studies, San Jose State University

    "A heartfelt documentary showing why diversity is critical for society to progress.”
    Rocky Chin
    President, Board of Directors, Asian American Arts Alliance

    "Highly Recommended. A mix of documentary footage, family photos and clever graphics...a profoundly moving story of three extraordinarily brave, pioneering women"
    Educational Media Reviews Online

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    Tea & Justice is included in the following Special Collections.
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RELATED LINKS

    Filmmaker’s Website
    Learn more about the filmmaker and subjects from the film.

    Tea & Justice Facebook Page

    NPR’s Brian Lehrer Interview with the filmmaker
    Director Ermena Vinluan and NYPD Detective Agnes Chen talk about confronting stereotypes in the workplace and take calls from listeners about racism and women in the police force.

    National Center for Women and Policing
    Get the facts on how effective women officers are in diffusing violence and responding to domestic abuse calls, though they represent only 13% of the police force.

    Sameshield.com
    Read about the first woman police officer Rose Fortune, who was born into slavery in 1774, and the stories of many other pioneering women in law enforcement.

    New York Asian Women’s Center
    Get help, get information, and get involved at this safe haven for battered women.

    Asian Americans for Equality
    Make a difference in the lives of Asian American immigrants in need of social services, affordable housing, and jobs through this organization created to serve New York’s 800,000 Asian residents.

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SPECIAL COLLECTIONS

WMM offers film collections on a variety of specific subject areas, including the collections MUSLIM: Behind the Veil, BODY IMAGE: Women & Young Girls, and AFRICA IS A WOMAN'S NAME.

Deep discounts are available when you purchase multiple films. More details.



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Women Make Movies is a multicultural, multiracial, non-profit media arts organization which facilitiates the production, promotion, distribution, and exhibition of independent films and videotapes by and about women. contact us