Chiaravalloti, Mukherji sponsor resolution condemning attacks on Asian Pacific Islander community

0

Assemblymen Nick Chiaravalloti (D-31) and Raj Mukherji (D-33), along with Sterley Stanley (D-18), are sponsoring a resolution condemning attacks against the Asian American Pacific Islander community, along with praising their contributions.

Assemblyman Raj Mukherji. Photo via NJ Assembly Dems.

By John Heinis/Hudson County View

“As we surpass the one-year mark of COVID-19, we recognize the impact it’s had on every
person. Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders have been unfairly blamed for the pandemic
since the very beginning, and the community has suffered a rise in discrimination and violent attacks ever since,” Chiaravalloti said in a statement.

“Here is when we say ‘no more, we don’t stand for this.’”

Resolution AR-239 recognizes the AAPI community as a fundamental and significant
community in the state of New Jersey, and condemns attacks against these communities as
intolerable.

New Jersey has nearly 1 million Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders residing in the state, accounting for about 10 percent of our population.

“Racism and xenophobia have been an unfortunate recurring part of the Asian American
immigrant experience since we first arrived in this country,” said Mukherji, who was the second Asian American to be elected to the New Jersey Legislature.

” … This week’s despicable events in Atlanta, and over the past year, serve to remind us that we must actively work to fight hate and ignorance. It’s a start to part ways with a commander-in-chief that would refer to this disease as the ‘Kung Flu’ or the ‘China Virus.’ It is my hope this resolution, and the outpouring of empathy and support from the beautifully diverse people of New Jersey for our AAPI neighbors will be a call to action for all of us.”

Eight people were shot to death at three massage parlors in the Atlanta area on Tuesday, March 16th, six of the victims being Asian women.

Authorities are still investigating the motive for the incident, though suspect Robert Aaron Long, 21, said his sex addiction led to his violent outburst, not racial prejudice.

“Over the past year, there has been an alarming increase in anti-Asian racism, violence, and xenophobia. We must be proactive to address the devastating impact of discrimination and fear that our AAPI communities are feeling,” noted Stanley.

“New Jersey is home to millions of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. It is critical to end the intolerance and violence and ensure the safety and wellbeing of our communities.”

Since last March, the advocacy group Stop AAPI Hate has received nearly 3,800 reports of hate incidents targeting Asian-Americans nationwide.

In New Jersey alone, Stop AAPI Hate reported nearly 50 incidents related to the COVID-19 pandemic of Asian American and Pacific Islander discrimination between March 19, 2020 and December 31, 2020.

Local officials in Jersey City and Hoboken have also weighed in on Tuesday’s tragedy.