All of us who are a part of the Asian & Asian American community care deeply about the well-being of our communities and hope that you and your family are healthy, well, and staying safe. In the midst of these uncertain and anxious times, we hope that all those who are affected by this crisis have access to the resources necessary for them and their families to deal with the multitude of challenges that they face as best as possible. We urge everyone, and particularly our political leaders and members of the medical community, to not forget the needs of the most vulnerable members of our society, including those who already feel marginalized and face everyday challenges in their lives due to sexism, racism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, religious intolerance, and other overt and covert forms of prejudice and discrimination.
In particular, we are very concerned that the Covid-19/Coronavirus outbreak has resulted in widespread racial rhetoric (such as using terms like “Chinese virus,” “Wuhan virus,” or “Kung-flu”), mis/disinformation, and conspiracy theories spread through social media and other media outlets. In turn, these have led to suspicion, hostility, hate, and even violence against anyone perceived to be Chinese or more generally, Asian or Asian Pacific American. There have already been hundreds of reported incidents of anti-Asian verbal harassment, bullying, Asian American businesses vandalized, and/or physical assault, with many more that go unreported.
To document such hate incidents, those affected are encouraged to report them using any or all of the following websites:
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice: Tell Your Story
- Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council: Stop AAPI Hate
- OCA – Asian Pacific American Advocates
We join others, such as U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY) and her resolution that was co-sponsored by 124 other members of Congress, in calling on public officials and law enforcement to:
- Condemn and denounce all manifestations of expressions of racism, xenophobia, discrimination, scapegoating, and ethnic or religious intolerance, and particularly any and all anti-Asian sentiment, in any form
- Recognize that the health and safety of all Americans, no matter their background, must be of utmost priority
- Combat misinformation and discrimination that put Asian Americans at risk
- Investigate and document all credible reports of hate crimes and incidents and threats against the Asian American community and to hold the perpetrators of those crimes, incidents, or threats accountable and bring them to justice
In these times of international crisis and the present historical moment, it is vital for everyone from all walks of life to stand up to those who seek to perpetuate xenophobia and racism, stand in defense of those who have been and continue to be vulnerable to prejudice and discrimination, and to share in the responsibility to create a positive society and culture that promotes and safeguards equity, inclusion, dignity, respect, and safety for all.