An Open Letter of Solidarity
To our colleagues and anyone else affected by the recent surge in Asian-targeted violence,
Hate crimes committed against Asian and Pacific Islander communities have drastically risen. Racially targeted crimes are notoriously underreported; even so, there has been a 1900% increase in anti-Asian hate crimes in the wake of harmful anti-Chinese rhetoric around COVID-19. The popularization of this dangerous rhetoric has fueled racist behavior, leading to increased acts of bias, discrimination, and violence towards Asian and Pacific Islander communities.
- Employees are experiencing increased xenophobia and microaggressions in the workplace.
- Citizens are experiencing acts of hate and violence in their communities.
- Business owners are dealing with disrespect and violence, which puts themselves, their families, and their businesses at risk.
These attacks are not limited to the US, and they’ve been growing in occurrence for the last year around the world.
We See You, We Hear You
Many of these attacks target some of the most vulnerable Asians and Pacific Islanders, including the elderly, disabled, and children. We have witnessed these crimes escalate in volume and frequency in recent weeks. We feel we must raise our voices and let our many Asian communities at Esri know that we are here for you. While it may feel like mainstream media, your colleagues and your non-Asian friends may not be aware of what’s going on – we see you, we hear you. We will do what we can to raise awareness about these issues and take action.
As community leaders, we support our Asian and Pacific Islander family at Esri, in the broader GIS community, and beyond. We empathize with all human suffering, especially suffering that stems from dehumanization. Marginalized groups in the US have experienced targeted hate crimes and bias. We encourage people in Black, Indigenous, other communities of color, and LGBTQIA+ people of all backgrounds to support each other and stand in solidarity with each other, especially in times of crisis.
What can you do?
- If you have been affected, please take time to process and heal. Tap into your collective communities for support in this difficult time.
- If you are just learning about these issues now, please resolve to learn more and amplify these stories.
- If you are looking for ways to take action, consider donating your time, skills, and other resources to organizations supporting Asian and Pacific Islander communities.
- For everyone, give space to your Asian and Pacific Islander colleagues. Understand that these are challenging times for people affected by hate crimes and other acts of bias.
The Asian, Desi & Pacific Islander Network and our fellow Belonging and Equity Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) are always open to anyone needing resources or support during this time.
Yours in solidarity,
- The Asian, Desi & Pacific Islander Network – Will Braganza & Chloe Teraslinna
- Claro – Maria Patino
- NorthStar – Aisha Jenkins & Clinton Johnson
- Amplify and share the experiences of ADPI communities
- Call your legislators and ask what they’re doing to support ADPI communities during this time
- Give space to your ADPI friends, colleagues, and family
- Support your local Asian-owned businesses
- Do not be silent if you witness someone being mistreated or targeted
- Report hate crimes here and here
- Mental health resources for Asian and Pacific Islanders
- Other resources: