A survey of some 300 Asians and Asian-Americans living in the San Gabriel Valley found that nearly one-third reported experiencing a hate incident since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report issued Wednesday.
The Asian Youth Center and Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Los Angeles released results from their “Stop Hate Survey,” which polled Asian and Asian-American residents in one of the largest Asian communities in the country.
The survey found that 31% of respondents said they or their family experienced a hate incident based on their race or ethnicity since the pandemic broke out in 2020 — with most incidents involving insults or verbal abuse.
In addition, the report found:
• 37% of respondents said they noticed an increase in racial discrimination or harassment in their community since the COVID-19 outbreak;
• 59% said they have changed the way they feel and behave when they leave home; and
• 49% of parent respondents reported they have concerns about their children returning to school as a result of anti-Asian hate and bullying.
The groups said that over 300 residents responded to the survey, with 284 meeting the eligibility criteria to be included in the final analysis.
“Respondents described getting verbally assaulted while shopping, observing hate speech and graffiti on Asian-owned businesses, feeling anxiety about their safety when leaving home, and being concerned about physical attacks for the first time as an Asian American,” according to a news release from the two groups.
“The majority of respondents did not feel there is support in their community for victims of racial discrimination or harassment.”
According to the groups, when asked to select resources that would most effectively help prevent discrimination, most respondents chose community patrol or neighborhood watch programs. Other remedies suggested were stronger community-police relations and more cross-cultural events, such as community gatherings and celebrations.
In addition, about three in four parents who responded said that more training for teachers and school staff — as well as clearer protocols on how schools address violence and bullying — would help them and their children feel safer in school.
Another theme to emerge was that “many respondents also felt their communities in general needed more mental health/substance abuse services, childcare/youth activities, and senior services,” the groups said.
“AYC proposes to address these findings in several ways,” said Michelle Freridge, AYC’s executive director. “First, we will continue addressing anti-Asian hate incidents in the San Gabriel Valley area of Los Angeles County through in-language community education, engagement, and mobilization activities to empower residents to prevent, address, and recover from Anti-Asian Hate incidents.”
She also cited youth-led social justice projects with high school students in Los Angeles and the San Gabriel Valley through the Youth & Parent Leadership Development Program and Dream Allies Network; and after-school programming in the Alhambra Unified and San Gabriel Unified school districts for K-8 students, which incorporates classes from the Asian American Education Project curriculum and anti-bullying lessons.
Connie Chung Joe, the CEO of Advancing Justice-LA, said her organization will “continue to fight for public programs and services that serve the diverse and complex needs of AAPIs in this community.”
“San Gabriel Valley is one of the most important Asian communities in California and we are here for individuals who don’t know where to turn for confidential, safe support,” Joe said.
Victims of hate incidents can report them to Los Angeles County by calling 211 or by going on the county’s “LA vs. Hate” website at lavshate.org/.
Hate incidents can also be reported to Stop AAPI Hate, a national coalition aimed at addressing anti-Asian American discrimination, at stopaapihate.org/.