This past year has been plagued by outspoken racism and xenophobia that has incited multiple violent attacks and hate crimes against Asian communities throughout the United States. Racism against Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities and Asians living in the United States is not new, but it has been exacerbated by rhetoric surrounding the pandemic and political polarization of the past year.
At CommonHealth ACTION, equity is at the core of our work, and we believe in treating each person – within the context of their social identities – with dignity and respect. Violence against Asians should not be tolerated and must not be ignored. Below are steps that we can all take to help end anti-Asian racism and racist rhetoric while standing in support of Asian and AAPI communities:
- Commit to Continuous Learning. Learning about equity, diversity, and inclusion – and ways to embrace and incorporate them into our lives and professions – is critical. In addition, we must engage in conversations with Asian communities and individuals to understand their experiences and explore effective ways to support and partner with them.
- Speak Up. Staying silent ignores the very real fact that these hate crimes are happening all around the country, so don’t be afraid to speak up when you witness anti-Asian racism or racist rhetoric. Here’s a resource from Neighbors West Northwest that might help: https://nwnw.org/be-an-ally-how-to-interrupt-hate-in-public/
- Do Something. It’s important to stop the spread of racist ideas, stereotypes, prejudices, and language before they turn into violent actions. If you hear someone perpetuating anti-Asian ideas, even if that is presented in a joking manner, speak up and take action. Should the moment arise, consider how you can use it as an opportunity to educate family, friends, and colleagues.
For more information or to learn how you can help, we encourage you to visit Stop AAPI Hate, an organization that has tracked and responded to incidents of hate, violence, and discrimination against Asians living in the U.S. and their communities.
Additional Resources to Share:
At CommonHealth ACTION, we believe that by working together, America can and should be better than violent acts and racist ideologies – and that we all have a right to feel and be safe as we move about society. Join us by doing your part. For more information on how we can help you prepare to be an ally to AAPI and other communities, visit: www.commonhealthaction.org/edi.