The news that eight people, six of them Asian-American women, were killed at businesses in the Atlanta area earlier this week followed a year of anti-Asian racism across the country. Stop AAPI Hate, an organization that tracks and responds to incidents of hate and violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders, received reports of about 3,800 incidents between March 19, 2020, and Feb. 28, 2021, while noting that reported numbers are “only a fraction of the number of hate incidents that actually occur.”
Today, State Senator Jay Chaudhuri is reintroducing the Hate Crime Prevention Act in the North Carolina General Assembly. The bill would strengthen existing protections and add new ones against hate crimes based on sexual orientation and ethnicity, but never received a hearing when it was first introduced in March 2019.
NCDP Chair Bobbie Richardson and NCDP AAPI Caucus President Gracie Galloway released a joint statement condemning the Atlanta attack and urging support for Sen. Chaudhuri’s bill.
“The North Carolina Democratic Party expresses our heartbreak and overwhelming feeling of loss with the Asian American and Pacific Islander community. The hate, racism, and violence that we’ve witnessed across the country over the past year and in recent days is disturbing and has no place in America. Sadly, we also know that this comes as no surprise for some. The Asian American and Pacific Islander community has endured attacks and abuse for far too long. That’s why it’s on all of us to come together to raise awareness and fight for change. The General Assembly cannot ignore Senator Chaudhuri’s bill any longer. We urge our legislators to wake up and take action to stop these heinous crimes. Enough is enough.”