Raising the Alarm: Stop AAPI Hate October Newsletter

November 2023
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Over the past month, communities across the nation have faced a dramatic escalation of hate and bigotry.

A 6-year-old Palestinian American child was fatally stabbed by his family’s landlord in the suburbs of Chicago.

Jewish students at Cornell University faced a barrage of violent online threats.

A Sikh man in Queens was beaten to death on the way home from a doctor’s appointment. 

These are only a few among hundreds, if not thousands, of antisemitic, Islamophobic, and anti-Arab acts of hate that have been reported since the recent surge of violence in the Middle East. Countless Palestinian, Muslim, Arab, and Jewish Americans — as well as Sikhs and other South Asians — are living in fear today. 

As a coalition dedicated to tackling hate at its root, we knew we could not remain silent about this wave of bigotry in America. Nor could we ignore the fact that it’s inextricably tied to the ongoing destruction of Gaza that’s fueling a cycle of vengeance, hate, and violence. That’s why we released a statement this week raising the alarm and calling for an immediate ceasefire.

From here, Stop AAPI Hate will remain focused on what we’re best positioned to do. This includes: holding our elected officials accountable when they incite hate with bigoted rhetoric or discriminatory domestic policies that scapegoat whole communities; extending support to impacted community groups; and sharing insights from our reporting center on how Asian Muslims, Sikhs, and non-Muslim South Asians, are being harmed by this surge of hate.

You can read our full statement here.

And as hard as it will be, we will work to ground our outrage and demands for justice in a vision of the world that never loses sight of our shared humanity.

Keep scrolling for more on what our coalition – and our broader AAPI communities – were up to this October.

Updates from our coalition

In a huge step forward for transit safety, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law Senate Bill 434, ‘Public Transit for All: Improving Safety & Increasing Ridership.’ Authored by Senator David Min and sponsored by Stop AAPI Hate, the legislation is the culmination of a multi-year effort to boost public safety across California’s 10 largest transit agencies.

➡️ Effective January 2024, SB 434 requires transit agencies to collect voluntary survey data on rider experiences with harassment, which will then propel the creation of data-driven solutions to keep riders safe.

To commemorate the intersection of Hispanic Heritage Month and Filipino American History Month in the first half of October, we sat down with the César Chavez Foundation to reflect on the Delano Grape Strike that began in 1965, when Filipino and Mexican farm workers came together to demand higher wages and safer working conditions. The strike has gone down in history as a powerful example of cross-racial solidarity and coalition-building.

To read more about our conversation, please visit our blog post. 

Newly released data from the FBI reveals that anti-Asian hate crimes decreased by 33% from 2021 to 2022 — but according to our Director of Data and Research, Stephanie Chan, this does not necessarily mean that anti-Asian hate is no longer a widespread issue. The FBI data only captures reported hate crimes, which does not include non-criminal civil rights violations and other widespread forms of racism and discrimination. Further, the numbers only reflect what is being reported. For every act of hate that is reported, there are many more that go unreported. “People are tired of bad news, and just want the problem to go away, and that has an effect on whether or not [they] are going to report,” Stephanie said to NBC News. “Sometimes, our communities can become numb, just because they’re experiencing it so much, that it becomes almost normalized.”

Last week, Stop AAPI Hate team members from across the country convened in San Francisco for our annual coalition-wide retreat, where we discussed the past, present, and future of our shared movement for racial justice.

A few days later, in Los Angeles, we held our first in-person community event. More than 80 people attended this intimate conversation between co-founder Manju Kulkarni and acclaimed author and activist Curtis Chin — who read from his memoir, “Everything I Learned, I Learned at a Chinese Restaurant.” 

Thank you to everyone who joined us for the evening — and to the Democracy Center at the Japanese American National Museum for hosting this incredible event. 

Exciting announcement: Stop AAPI Hate is growing our Policy and Data & Research teams! Visit our careers page to learn more about the following roles: 

Updates from our communities

🔎 The Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Department of Education has launched an investigation into a wave of hate and bigotry targeting AAPI students at Montana State University. The current experience of students of color and LGBTQ+ students at MSU is just one of many across college campuses across the country — a reminder that racism and discrimination remain. 

🎉 Big news for civil rights: Fresno has now become the second city in the U.S. to ban caste discrimination, following Seattle, in the midst of a movement to recognize caste as a protected class.

📑 The 2020 Census Report is here! For the first time in U.S. history, Indian Americans represent  the largest Asian American group in the U.S., growing by over 50% to 4,397,737 between 2010 and 2020. 

📝 The Pew Research Center published a report taking a look at religion among Asian Americans. The report found that 40% of Asian American adults felt ‘close to’ at least one religion they don’t personally identify with due to family background or culture. 

🏡 As the Lahaina community continues to recover from the deadly wildfires in August, one family shares their experience rebuilding and coping with what they lost in the fire. 

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