Members of the Asian American and Pacific Islander community have spoken out that this isn't the first event in the past year that has caused fear in their community. In fact, it is just one event of many that has occurred since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Yet, the Asian community cannot do it alone, and while they publicly grieve the attacks that demonstrate just how deeply the issues of anti-Asian racism run, it's time for the public to take part. One way that you can help you community, your friends, and your coworkers right now is to take action against anti-Asian racism in the workplace.
In this blog, we'll discuss a few ways that you can combat this racism and become an ally.
1. Acknowledge anti-Asian racism
If you're fortunate enough to have to learn about the racism that exists in the world, take a moment and check your privilege. The very first step as an ally is acknowledging that anti-Asian racism exists. Learn more about the model minority myth and how the economic advancement of some Asian Americans has been used to erase the discrimination that have faced throughout history. Include an online diversity training to integrate awareness and inclusion. The more you understand the issues they're facing, the better you can help support them.
2. Check in with your AAPI peers
As a non-Asian American colleague, do your part by checking in and showing support for your AAPI peers. Just know that asking, "How are you feeling?" or "Is there anything I can do for you?" doesn't always make things better. In fact, it can place an undue burden on the other person and make them feel as if they need to respond ot your offer.
Instead, show support by offering to take a meeting off their plate, extending a deadline if needed, or simply asking what you can do for them. Be mindful that some people actually dive into work and become more productive when they're grieving, so you don't need to automatically extend deadlines if the person doesn't express the need. Just be open to the conversation and ready to show you're aware of what's going on.
3. Donate to AAPI cause and businesses
If you're not able to directly show support or get involved by volunteering your time, send money. In late March, New York Magazine published 68 Ways to Donate in Support of Asian Communities. Check out these organizations and pick one to support. If possible, choose one that impacts your own community and continue to seek ways that you can help your AAPI peers locally.
If possible, check with your company to see if they'll match any donations given to approved AAPI organizations. This is a great way that businesses can demonstrate their support of anti-racist causes.
Part of being an ally and helping to confront racism at work is starting the conversation and checking in with your colleagues. But this isn't the only step you need to take. Make sure you get out in your community and support causes either through activism or donations. Together, we can denounce anti-Asian violence, create real change, and build a better future for all.