On May 18, 2022, HRI joins anti-bullying nonprofit Act To Change, as it rallies the nation in commemorating the fourth Annual National Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Day Against Bullying andHate.
HRI is committed to ending bullying and hate in the AAPI community and is proud to join this movement. National AAPI Day Against Bullying and Hate is part of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month (APAHM) and marks the birthday of Vincent Chin. In 1982, Chin was falsely blamed for the layoffs in the auto industry, and brutally murdered in a hate crime. This year marks 40 years since this heinous act of hate, and we’re saddened to see history repeat itself in the form of COVID-19 fueled racism and bullying.
America has a long history of anti-AAPI racism and violence. This brutal history of discrimination includes the Chinese Exclusion Act, Japanese American internment camps, colonization of Hawaiian islands, post 9/11 stereotyping, and use of the “model minority” myth – all of which portrays AAPIs as the “perpetual foreigner”, and evokes feelings of hate and xenophobia against the community.
May is also Mental Health Awareness Month. The AAPI community has some of the highest rates of mental health issues, coupled with stigmas surrounding the topic. A recent Trevor Project study shows that 40% of AAPI LGBTQ youth have considered suicide in the last year. The increased wave of bullying since the beginning of the pandemic is compounded by cultural, religious, and linguistic barriers that can keep AAPI youth from seeking and receiving help.
Act To Change’s Asian American Bullying Survey Report shows that 80% of Asians have experienced bullying, in-person or online, in 2021. There have been nearly 11,000 cases of reported anti-Asian discrimination within the last year. Elderly members of the community have been slapped, punched, burned and beaten on the streets. Two mass shootings in 2021 have taken the lives of 10 Asian Americans.
We publicly denounce all bullying and hate against the AAPI community, and stand in solidarity with Act To Change and more than 250 community partners to encourage the public to foster dialogue, share resources, and end bullying and hate.