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March 19, 2021Statement

Disability Rights Pennsylvania Condemns Anti-Asian Violence


Peri Jude Radecic, Chief Executive Officer Disability Rights Pennsylvania
301 Chestnut Street
Suite 300
Harrisburg, PA 17101


Disability Rights Pennsylvania Condemns Anti-Asian Violence

Disability Rights Pennsylvania condemns all anti-Asian violence, hate, discrimination, and intimidation. We cannot stand by silently while one part of our community is increasingly the target of hate, violence, and discrimination. The increase in hate against Asian Americans has been linked to the start of the pandemic as COVID-19 was labeled by some in xenophobic terms.

This week, 8 people, including 6 Asian women, were gunned down in a horrific act of violence in the Atlanta Metro area. The names of those lost were Soon C. Park, Hyun J. Grant, Suncha Kim, Yong A. Yue, Delaina Ashley Yaun, Paul Andre Michels, Xiaojie Tan, and Daoyou Feng. This violence spread fear and intimidation in our communities and we cannot allow it to continue. Policymakers and law enforcement must aggressively combat anti-Asian hate and discrimination, and there must be resources to respond to all acts of domestic terrorism.

Disability Rights Pennsylvania also cautions the news media, police, and prosecutors against the tendency to blame mental illness for xenophobia and white supremacy. Racism is not a mental illness. Instead, the media, police, and prosecutors should focus on supporting the victims of hate crimes who are likely to be the ones that experience trauma from their experience.

Disability Rights Pennsylvania (DRP) is the statewide protection and advocacy agency for Pennsylvanians with disabilities. For over 40 years, DRP has protected and advocated for the rights of people with disabilities so they may live the lives they choose, free from abuse, neglect, discrimination, and segregation.