WASHINGTON — Connecticut Attorney General William Tong co-hosted a national convening on countering anti-Asian American and Pacific Islander hate crimes along with the District of Columbia Attorney General and the Attorney General Alliance.
The meeting - held at the start of AAPI Heritage Month - assembled a broad array of legal and policy experts, advocates, and business and corporate leaders from across the country to discuss how to combat anti-AAPI hate and offer solutions to address it.
“The history of bias and hate against Asian-Americans in this country is long and largely invisible, but we cannot remain silent anymore,” said Tong. “The violence and bigotry existed well before the pandemic scapegoating of Asian-Americans, but malicious rhetoric like ‘China virus’ and ‘kung flu’ have worsened this trauma and placed targets on the backs of families like mine."
He continued: "I thank all who convened today and committed to real action to end AAPI hate. This is a first step, and I look forward to continuing this hard work together.”
Racine said in a statement that the country "faces a reckoning" as the pandemic laid bare many of the disparities and biases that have been exacerbated over the past year.
“This moment in our country demands action. Today we brought together some of the greatest minds from across the nation to have an honest, solutions-oriented conversation about how to stop anti-AAPI hate," Racine said. "No one should fear being attacked. Last year when I launched my Presidential Initiative to help address hate, my goal was to unite individuals from different political parties, various industries, and all levels of government around how to address hate and seek solutions. Today, we’re doing just that.”
Officials said participants "discussed the history of hate against the AAPI community, the rise of online anti-AAPI hate, how the law enforcement community is responding to hate, the importance of representation and equity across sectors, and the need to stand up to hate and support survivors. Participants also pledged to take tangible steps to help combat anti-AAPI hate and called on others to do the same."
As part of the meeting:
• Policymakers and elected leaders highlighted legislation that needs to pass to increase hate crime reporting;
• Participants were educated on available bystander trainings to learn how to intervene when they witness hate; and
• Survivors of hate incidents and hate crimes learned more about resources that are available to them; and
• Business leaders made pledges to help address anti-AAPI hate.
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