CLASP Condemns Violence Against AAPI Community

This statement can be attributed to Jamie Riley, PhD, director of racial equity at the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP).

Washington, D.C., March 1, 2021—CLASP recognizes and condemns the racism, bigotry, and related attacks toward Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities. The violence on Asian Americans in New York City last week is the latest in a series of hateful verbal and physical attacks on AAPIs. This is partly due to a connection between COVID-19 and China, fueled by unchecked and xenophobic political rhetoric and bolstered by ignorance and silence. The greater history of racism and violence toward AAPI communities is deeply rooted in white supremacist ideologies, which have long fostered socially acceptable, stereotypical mistruths about communities of color.

As an anti-poverty organization that understands how poverty and racism intersect, we recognize that silence is complicity. In addition to condemning xenophobia and the violence it generates, we must explicitly acknowledge how AAPIs are marginalized and dispel the “model minority” myth—that all AAPIs are economically secure, healthy, educated, and live without life’s barriers—and build solidarity between communities. We will work to uplift the voices of AAPIs living in poverty and continue to push for equitable policy solutions that center racial equity for all communities of color.