In Solidarity Against Anti-Asian Racism

March 30, 2021
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The Department of Psychology stands with all Asian diaspora communities, Black and Indigenous communities, and communities of all people of colour in the effort to create a more equal and just society. We condemn all forms of racism.

Racism against the Asian Canadian community has a long history. However, it has escalated alarmingly since the beginning of the current global pandemic. Members of the Asian community have faced increased acts of hate and violence.  In the last year, 1,150 instances of anti-Asian racism have been reported through two websites, COVIDRacism.ca and elimin8hate.org.  In addition, the Vancouver Police Department confirmed that anti-Asian attacks have increased 717 per cent over the past year. These attacks have targeted women, the elderly, young people, and those in low paying jobs or who did not speak English. However, it is also important to recognize how these attacks have left many more within the Asian community feeling scared, vulnerable, and excluded within their own neighbourhoods and workplaces.

The recent massacre of Asian Americans in Atlanta, Georgia have highlighted the most blatant forms of hate and violence directed at the Asian community, women, immigrants, and sex workers.    

We recognize that events like these are not new. Systemic racism against Asian Canadians has been occurring for hundreds of years.  We also recognize that our Asian students, faculty, and staff bear the weight of systemic racism as well as the shared burden of this escalation of racist violence. It is therefore important that all of us exercise compassion and support one another as best we can.

At the same time, we must continue our efforts to build and sustain an inclusive and safe community. A valuable step in this process is for each of us to examine your own privilege - be it race, age, sexual orientation, religion, disability, gender, mental health, marital status, socioeconomic status. We must recognize the ways that our society privilege some groups over others and thus allow those who experience these privileges to ignore and avoid recognizing the barriers and suffering that are faced by others.

In addition to institutional efforts, individual members of our Department and the public may wish to take action to help and support Asian communities by: signing petitions, donating financial or tangible resources, amplifying the voices of Asian people, educating ourselves about systemic racism, supporting Asian business, artists, activists etc., and having discussions about these important issues with family, friends, and people in our community.

Here are links to some local, national, and global non-profit organizations:

For students, faculty and staff who experience grief, trauma and/or stress resulting from racism and violence, support is available: