Resources to protect those from COVID-fueled bigotry.
As the COVID-19 virus continues to rampage through our once active society, the latest news now publicizes the horror of what ignorance and a racist heart can do in moments of despair. Anti-Asian racist and xenophobic attacks are on the rise, causing many Asian-Americans to not only fear their health due to the pandemic but their physical safety as well.
Since the beginnings of COVID – back when “Wuhan-Virus” was the phrase on everyone’s tongue – the WHO warned against referring to the disease by its geographic/national point of origin as it normalizes the use of racist rhetoric which was made apparent with former President Trump’s frequent persistence in calling it the “China Virus” or “Kung Flu.” These acts of aggression paved the way for bigoted aggression towards Asian-Americans and people of color. Now, one year since the pandemic shook up our lives, groups have emerged to fight against racial injustices.
“Stigma, to be honest, is more dangerous than the virus itself,” Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO director-general.
Safe Walks NYC
Founded by Peter Kerre, Safe Walks NYC is a volunteer program that ensures the safety of those traveling alone. The program was established to combat the recent uptick in gendered and racism-charged subway attacks. Initially starting in Bushwick, Brooklyn; the group has since expanded to Chinatown and Harlem, with hopes of furthering their Safe Walks community in other cities. To request a safe walking partner for yourself, DM their Instagram account @safewalksnyc or through their website safewalx.com.
Stop AAPI Hate
Stop Asian American and Pacific Islander Hate, or Stop AAPI Hate, has been at the forefront of fighting for the safety and justice for all Asian Americans. With anti-Asian racism only exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become Stop AAPI Hate’s mission to combat the increase in hate. Since March 2020, Stop AAPI Hate has been uploading hate crime reports from across the US and reporting on the change in anti-Asian rhetoric that has been normalized under the guise of COVID. You can view these reports here. Stop AAPI Hate has also been updating a detailed Google Doc form full of resources, including: links for online and state-specific assistance, upcoming events, incident reports, and training for bystanders witnessing xenophobic hate crimes.
Little Tokyo Service Center
The Little Tokyo Service Center (LTSC) is a group based in Los Angeles, created to protect underprivileged business owners and families’ livelihoods. The group works closely with businesses located in Little Tokyo, offering small business aid, community organizing and planning, and real estate development. LTSC also assists struggling families through child care/educational programs, mentorships, workshops, tax assistance, and helping the community’s elderly. Their services go above and beyond to ensure the community’s success through diligence support, giving them the best possible foot to stand on. A list of their complete services can be found on their website.