Following the recent spike in anti-Asian violence taking place across the U.S. and especially in large urban centers like Los Angeles and New York, the state of California is stepping in to try and help combat the problem. In a legislative session on Monday, Feb. 22, the California assembly passed a motion approving $1.4 million in state funding to help combat anti-Asian violence and racism.
“Assembly member Phil Ting, D-San Francisco and chair of the Assembly Budget Committee secured funding through the passage of AB 85, which provides additional state resources for the ongoing pandemic response,” reported The Sacramento Bee’s Ashley Wong. “The money will be used to support Stop AAPI Hate’s research and help the organization track anti-Asian incidents, which have increased during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
In a statement, Ting said: “The rise in hate incidents against Asian Americans during the pandemic is alarming. But we can’t solve a problem without knowing how big it is. New state funding allows the data gathering to continue, and the research will ultimately lead us to solutions that will make all communities safer.”
The Stop AAPI Hate’s reporting center was created in March 2020 by the Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council, Chinese for Affirmative Action and San Francisco State University’s Asian American Studies department. Stop AAPI Hate’s goal is to gather reports of anti-Asian discrimination from across the country. In just the first six months of the center’s existence — the period between March and August of 2020 — it received more than 2,500 incidents of anti-Asian discrimination nationwide. More than 40% of those reports originated within California.
In related news, NextShark’s Carl Samson has reported that hundreds of protestors gathered in Los Angeles and New York over the weekend of Feb. 20 and 21 to protest the alarming spike in anti-Asian racism and violence.
Speaking at one of the rallies in New York, Senator John Liu said “We understand when we’re being singled out for one reason and one reason only, and that is the color of our skin, or some would say, the angle of our eyes. That is bigotry at its worst, and we cannot stand for [it] here in New York or anywhere else in this country.”
For more on Stop AAPI Hate or to report an incident of anti-Asian violence, go to stopaapihate.org.