Asian Americans in CA have reported hundreds of hate incidents since start of pandemic

An advocacy group has collected data of over 800 incidents of discrimination against Asian Americans in California.

Rachel Brown Image
Thursday, July 2, 2020
Hundreds of hate incidents against Asian Americans reported in CA
An advocacy group has collected data of over 800 incidents of discrimination against Asian Americans in California.

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Asian American groups across California say statements made by President Donald Trump are fueling discrimination and assaults on Asian Americans.

They pointed to a recent rally where the president repeatedly used the term "kung flu" to refer to the novel coronavirus.

On Wednesday morning, Stop Asian American Pacific Islander Hate in California held a virtual news conference, sharing new data that shows more than 800 incidents of harassment against Asian Americans in the last 12 weeks.

"We need to send a message that racism against anyone, any group is simply not acceptable," said California Assemblymember Al Muratsuchi (D- Torrance).

When the pandemic hit, Asian Americans began reporting attacks from people who blamed them for the public health crisis.

Coronavirus: Local boy bullied, attacked, targeted just because he's Asian, officials say

Rising backlash due to fears over the novel coronavirus prompted community and political leaders in L.A. to take a stand.

Videos surfaced from a Torrance park, showing a woman using graphic, racist language against Asian Americans, putting a national spotlight on the hate and harassment.

In another instance, a letter was posted to the front door of an Asian American business, threatening to bomb the store if they didn't leave the country.

Stop AAPI Hate is calling on Gov. Gavin Newsom to fund initiatives to protect the millions of Asian Americans living across the state.

"We believe the governor must include Asian American community representatives on the soon to be established COVID-19 task force to help ensure that the state takes real action to stem racial discrimination," explained Manjusha Kulkarni, Executive Director of Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council.

"We hope and strongly urge our governor to work with us," said Assemblymember David Chiu, who is also chair of the Asian Pacific Islander Legislative Caucus.

The group also wants the state to declare schools across the state safe havens, and mandate that curriculums address bias-based bullying.