Asian American Unity Webinar

AAPI Solidarity Confronting COVID-19 Pandemic

11:00 am – 12:08 pm Pacific Time

Saturday, April 25, 2020

 

Summary

 

The Webinars started promptly at 11:00 am with Moderator Anthony Le, Deputy Director APALI welcoming everyone and a brief ground rules of this event. There were 386 webinar sign-ins, some with more than one attendee per connections.

Online Survey I was conducted before the webinar to assess the mood of the audience which was calm and relaxed.

Dr. SK Lo the President of AAUC gave welcoming remarks and the purpose of the Webinar with a brief thank you to the people who have made this event possible and in particular Ding Ding TV, CLUSA and Noony Media.

Scott Stringer, New York City Comptroller introduced U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY) who, on March 25, 2020 introduced a resolution in the U.S. House of Representatives denouncing the anti-Asian sentiment caused by the outbreak of the coronavirus.

Keynote Speaker: U.S. Rep. Grace Meng framed the current pandemic as a most important challenge for the APIA community. She has been fighting this issue long before the virus hit NYC and NY state. “The increased use of anti-Asian rhetoric, particularly from our nation’s leaders such as the President, and their use of terms like ‘Chinese virus,’ ‘Wuhan virus,’ and ‘Kung-flu,’ is not only irresponsible, reckless, and downright disgusting, it threatens the safety of the Asian American community. Such language demeans, disparages, and scapegoats Asian Americans.”

Rep. Meng fielded a few questions before leaving for another appointment.

Question: What are the present challenges facing APIA?

Answer: We must support local small businesses. APIA communities must learn to speak up and publicize the contributions of APIA health-care personnel and direct contribution of PPE and other health and medical equipment.

Question: How should we rebuild our community?

Answer: It is important that APIA build alliance with the African and the Hispanic Americans during the rebuilding process.

Some Good News featured an APAPA video with Yen Marshall, the APAPA Executive Director and local APAPA chapters in NY, Texas, Seattle, etc. serving their communities by contributing PPE, well wish cards, and other equipment to fight the pandemic.

Audience participation on their own good news stories included:

Hongmei Li spoke on how to unite and protect ourselves

Lily Chen, UCA talked about the National Chinese Restaurant Association’s  contribution of  meals to first responders in Chicago and the significance of the 150 year celebration of the Chinese Railroad Workers!

Online survey II was conducted at this juncture to show the mood of the audience which was nervous, worried, anxious and unsure resulting from the backlash of the pandemic on APIA.

Incidents of hate and bias acts and crimes observed around the country.

Audience participation on what they have seen or experienced on hate and bias incidents included:

Lenny Wang – Seattle – Anti Chinese slogans is scary

Portia Silverberg – debunked the myth that SF Bay area is safe for APIA. 

Resources for APIA:

Jason Tengco, Community Outreach and Development Specialist of CLUSA, listed the anti-hate and bias resources available to the APIA community:

Next Steps – Three things we can do: