What culminated in a horrific mass shooting that left six Asians dead in Atlanta was not an isolated event, but rather an example of the heartbreaking upsurge of anti-Asian racism. This mounting hate tide is causing community groups to fear for their safety everywhere, and Canada is no exception. Here are things you can and should do to be an ally. Together, we can all be part of the solution.
Start By Educating Yourself
While there has been an alarming rise in anti-Asian hate crime and speech within the past year, anti-Asian racism and xenophobia are not new phenomena. It’s crucial to educate ourselves on the history of anti-Asian racism in order to move forward in addressing and eradicating the discrimination this community faces.
Here are a few of the educational resources we recommend:
Anti-Asian Violence Resources
Act 2 End Racism
World Directory of Minorities and Indigenous Peoples
Fight COVID-19 Racism
Canada’s History of Anti-Asian Racism That COVID-19 Has Amplified
Racial Segragation of Asian Canadians
Enroll in Bystander Intervention Training
Taking bystander intervention training can prepare us to identify and de-escalate xenophobic harassment in a safe and sensitive manner. Social justice organization Hollaback! and Asian Americans Advancing Justice have teamed up to offer Bystander Intervention Training to Stop Anti-Asian/American and Xenophobia Harassment workshops. The Government of Canada also offers bystander intervention training on their website, with safe and positive options to prevent harm when there is a risk of violence.
The goal of this training is to send a message that hate, including racism and xenophobia, is unacceptable in all of its forms.
Listen to Victims and Help Report Incidents
A simple, yet essential step in supporting victims of anti-Asian hate crimes is listening to their stories with empathy. If someone is comfortable enough to share their experiences of racism with you, build on their trust by validating their pain, and offer to help report those traumatic incidents.
Use Fight COVID Racism to report anti-Asian harassment, hate crimes, or violence. This platform also has many educational resources readily available.
Another way to support the Asian community is by donating to relevant organizations.
In the wake of the Atlanta shooting, donations can be made to support the victims and their families through the Atlanta chapter of Asian Americans Advancing Justice’s donation page.
Earlier this month GoFundMe also launched the #StopAsianHate campaign that keeps track of and regroups all verified fundraisers related to anti-Asian acts of violence.
You may also consider donating to organizations that help the Asian community including, Canadian Anti-Racism Network, Canadian Society for Asian Arts, Canadian and Southeast Asian Legal Centre, Asian Canadian Benevolent Association For The Elderly, Chinese Canadian National Council, and South Asian Women’s Centre.
Use Social Media to Spread Awareness
Social media is a great tool in spreading awareness as well as educating yourself. In addition to posting about the current anti-Asian hate crimes, try following Instagram accounts that address anti-Asian racism and the challenges the Asian community groups are currently facing.
Some accounts we’d like to highlight include
Support Asian-Owned Businesses
When looking for a restaurant to dine at or a local shop to support, opt for an Asian-owned business. Asian-owned businesses were the first to see a decline in sales even before the first case of coronavirus was confirmed in North America, purely due to xenophobia.
Supporting Asian-owned businesses and buying directly from them, guarantees that the proceeds will go directly to the business owners, as well as their employees, and will keep their businesses afloat during these difficult times.
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