On behalf of the Los Angeles County Anti-Racism, Diversity and Inclusion (ARDI) Initiative, we join the many voices condemning the recent surge of hate crimes and violence against our Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities.
We also grieve with our AAPI community members, and all who are impacted by racially motivated acts of brutality. Our condolences go out to the victims, their families and friends, and the community.
The high-profile shootings that recently occurred in Atlanta and took the lives of eight individuals happened alongside numerous reported attacks against our AAPI communities. According to the #StopAAPIHate campaign, this rise in violent crimes has led to more than 3,795 reported anti-Asian hate incidents in the past year.
Unfortunately, the growth in violence against AAPI community since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has been intensified by very public racist rhetoric, which is itself rooted in harmful stereotypes about people of Asian descent. It is a sobering reminder of the discrimination and anti-Asian racism that AAPI communities and communities of color have experienced throughout history.
The ARDI Initiative is proactively working to eliminate structural racism and build a more equitable Los Angeles County. With the support of the Board of Supervisors and county leaders, we are taking a stance and providing resources to help in this effort. The board, in affirming that racism is a matter of public health, has increased resources to expand L.A. County’s Human Relations Commission’s L.A. vs. Hate network and strengthen the county 2-1-1 hotline to report and track acts of violence against residents.
I encourage you to stand with us and help #StopAAPIHate. Let us live out anti-racist values by working together and combatting racism in all its forms. You can support the efforts of the Stop AAPI Hate initiative, currently partnering with the UCLA Asian American Studies Center, which includes ways to report hate crimes, share safety tips, and other avenues for community engagement.
If you or someone you know needs support to help cope and heal in light of these events, or otherwise wants to further engage on this issue , the following resources may be helpful:
UCLA American Indian Studies Center’s Hate Crime Map (anonymous reporting platform)
We must remember that hate against any one of us is a threat and harm to all of us. Thank you for your continued support and for standing in solidarity with our AAPI community.
D’Artagnan Scorza, Ph.D.
Executive Director, Racial Equity