Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a documented uptick of violence against Asians and Asian Americans all over the US, from Oakland, California to Queens, New York. These attacks reflect the racist rhetoric scapegoating Asian Americans for the pandemic, but also highlight the need to address the long-standing systems that have led up to this moment. Asian Law Alliance, along with other community based Asian American organizations, condemned “criminalization and retribution” and called for response to address “the root causes of racial violence” in a statement released by Asian Americans Advancing Justice.
Asian Law Alliance is committed to working long-term to address Anti-Asian racism in all forms, and is currently strategizing right now to decide what the best course of actions are. If you would like to get involved with Asian Law Alliance’s efforts to combat violence against Asian/ Asian Americans and the systems that underlie it, please email Gabriela Garzón Gupta at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are open to ideas and collaboration, and would love to hear from community members and organizations.
Local Bay Area/ California Coverage
- California Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus (CAPILC) video regarding Anti-Asian Hate Crimes (March 11, 2021). CAPLIC is comprised of CA legislators that aim to serve, represent, and advocate for the API community.
- API Folks reported 3,800 hate-related incidents during the pandemic, report finds (March 16, 2021). A new study by Stop AAPI Hate found that there were 3,800 reported hate-incidents during the first year of the pandemic.
- Anti-Asian hate crimes increased by nearly 150% in 2020, mostly in N.Y. and L.A., new report says (March 9, 2021). A new study by CSU San Bernandino revealed that while overall hate crimes were on a decline, hate acts against API folks rose significantly.
- A Surge of anti-Asian Violence is forcing another Racial Reckoning in the Bay Area (February 25, 2021). News article describing the grassroots response to anti-Asian violence and what it means for Asians/ Asian Americans in the Bay Area.
- On Anti-Asian Hate Crimes: Who is Our Real Enemy? (February 10, 2021). Opinion article by Oakland activist, Michelle Kim, on why we need cross-community solidarity during a time where multiple ethnic and racial groups are under attack.
San José/ Santa Clara County Developments
- New hate task force in Santa Clara County launches as incidents rise across country (March 1, 2021). The task force is led by San José Council member, Maya Esparza, and 10 other members to “[ensure] state and federal laws prohibiting hate crimes are enforced in the South Bay, as well as creating school-based programming to help ameliorate violence resulting from prejudice”
- San Jose City Council unanimously approved a proposal by Councilmember Raul Peralez to protect the Asian Pacific Islander (February 11, 2021). The plan includes launching community listening sessions and planning safety workshops.
- Further coverage by San José Spotlight: https://sanjosespotlight.com/san-jose-scrambles-to-respond-to-attacks-on-elderly-asian-americans/
Community Resources: How to Report Hate Crimes and Protect our Community
- Stop AAPI Hate: You can report incidents of aggression, racial profiling, and violence here in a variety of languages, including English, Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese. The Asian Pacific Policy & Planning Council created this reporting center. Since the beginning of the pandemic, over 3,000 people of Asian descent have reported acts of racial aggression.
- Coronavirus Resources to Stand Against Racism: Resources for reporting, documenting, and intervening in anti-Asian acts of aggression and violence. Created by Asian Americans Advancing Justice.
- Bystander Intervention Training to Stop Anti-Asian/ American and Xenophobic Harassment: In partnership with AAJC, Hollaback! is offering free bystander and de-escalation trainings for those at risk and allies.
- How to be an ally: What you can do as a bystander to race-based harassment or violence (March 19, 2021). LA Times article about how to be an effective ally and intervene when you witness a race-based harassment or violence.