Recent horrific crimes against Asian Americans have sparked much-needed conversations about the rise in anti-Asian hate during the pandemic.
Since the pandemic was declared last year, hateful rhetoric surrounding Asian Americans and the coronavirus have led to widespread physical and verbal attacks on people of Asian descent.
On Tuesday, community leaders across Texas are uniting together to stand against the rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans by hosting a virtual news conference at 10 a.m. They will demand action from state and local leaders.
The latest news from around North Texas.
Asian American community groups from Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio are calling for an end to the hate, which came to a boiling point last week when eight people – mostly Asian women – were killed in shootings at spas outside Atlanta.
Despite days of outcry to stop the violence, there were two more high-profile attacks back to back this weekend in New York City.
In one incident, a woman said she was approached by a man while she was walking home from a #StopAsianHate protest. She claims he grabbed her sign and stomped it on the ground before punching her twice in the face.
In a separate attack just hours later, reports say a 54-year-old woman was walking home Sunday afternoon when someone approached from behind used a metal pipe to hit her in the face. Witnesses said they hear the suspect say "I'm here to f--- up Asians."
The suspects in both incidents were arrested.
Groups in Texas are on high alert. They say of the nearly 4,000 hate crime incidents against Asian Americans across the U.S. in the last year. More than 100 hate crimes in total were documented in Texas, the 4th highest number in the country.
How to Help
Gal Jumaoas, who will be representing Dallas in the news conference, is the executive director of the Multi-Ethnic Education and Economic Development Center. He was also the former president of the Greater Dallas Asian American Chamber of Commerce for many decades.
He said he hopes Tuesday’s conference and continued push for change will help his community feel safer.
“My daughter, who’s already 27 years old, asked me 'Don’t go out on your own!' So it’s kind of scary. That alone has already had an impact on our social life and family life. And definitely on my work,” Jumaoas said.
We've learned that some police departments like Grand Prairie police are increasing patrols in Asian American communities.
But community leaders said they want to see more support from across the state.
President Joe Biden signed a presidential memorandum in January to direct resources toward combating xenophobia against Asian Americans.
The hope is that Texas government leaders can do the same on a local level.