6 Ways To Be An Ally For Asian-Americans Right Now

Photo: Jacob Lund / Shutterstock
6 Ways To Be An Ally For Asian-Americans Right Now

Anti-Asian violence has drastically increased due to racist rhetoric around the pandemic and it’s time to throw your support behind putting an end to this discrimination.

A series of recent violent acts against elderly Asian-Americans in California has sparked an overdue conversation about the racism and prejudices Asians are subjected to across the US. 

Asian American Pacific Islanders have been particularly vulnerable during the pandemic and have experienced increased fears and safety concerns in the wake of these attacks. 

Now, as we welcome in the Lunar New Year, it is time to step up in support of AAPI and show our allyship against anti-Asian racism. 

Here are ways to help the Asian-American community in the fight against racism:

1. Donate to fundraisers.

This fundraiser is raising money for the Asian Americans Advancing Justice, an organization that is challenging laws and systems that leave Asian Americans vulnerable to racist violence and harassment. 

You can also donate money to this fundraiser that was originally established to seek donations for Asian-American community organizations in the San Francisco Bay Area. 

However, after hitting their $50,000 goal, the creator of the fund are now pledging to divide any additional donations amongst similar organizations across the US. 

This particular GoFundMe has attracted much-needed attention after 84-year-old Vicha Ratanapakdee was killed in the Bay Area while out for a morning walk on Jan. 30. 

You can also donate directly to a memorial fund for Ratanapakdee established by his family. 

RELATED: 10 Resources By BIPOC Folks That Will Make Your Activism More Intersectional

2. Elevate AAPI voices.

Listening to and supporting Asian-American activists and speakers as they fight for justice for their communities is essential if you want to be a good ally. 

StopDiscriminAsian is a powerful resource to follow on Instagram if you want to keep up to date with this cause and learn more about emerging resources. Asians4AntiRacism on Instagram also explores similar resources as well as raising interesting discussions are the intersection of anti-Asian and anti-Black racism. 

It’s also important to follow Asian creatives and artists to celebrate the triumphs of this community while staying aware of their struggles. 

AsianAmericanCollective is a community of musicians and entertainers to watch. Hit follow on SlantdCreative’s Instagram to keep up with emerging Asian-American artists and authors.

Make sure to also check out Jezz Chung, a poet, philosopher, and performer who compiled this helpful list of resources: 

3. Educate yourself and others on anti-AAPI racism.

Keeping up with these resources and current issues relating to anti-AAPI racism is a good start, but this is a problem that runs deep. 

Taking time to read up on the history of anti-Asian racism in America — and encouraging others to do the same — will let you in on the full scope of this discrimination. 

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America for Americans: A History of Xenophobia in the United States by Erika Lee is a history-spanning book that delves into how xenophobia is built into American culture. 

The book looks at a lot of minorities groups but Lee’s focus on Chinese immigrants is particularly eery when read in today’s contexts. 

RELATED: 4 Struggles You Probably Have No Idea Asian-American Women Face Every Single Day

4. Call out and report instances of anti-AAPI hate. 

Speaking up when you hear others making racist comments, “jokes” or acting in a hateful way towards or about AAPI people can go a long way. Asian-Americans cannot be left to defend themselves alone, allyship is key to progression. 

Stop AAPI Hate has even established an online form that anyone can use to report instances of hate. Doing this is extremely beneficial as the site can use this data to better assess the need for new policies and educational resources that tackle racism. 

Ever since former-President Donald Trump popularized anti-Asian rhetoric around the pandemic, instances of anti-Asian racism have been on the rise

What might seem like a throwaway comment to you can be extremely devastating for Asian-Americans so make sure to speak up and speak out whenever it is safe to do so.

5. Promote Asian-American mental health supports.

These recent incidents of anti-Asian violence as well as the ongoing effects of COVID-related racism have a damaging impact on the mental health of the Asian community. 

This AsianMentalHealthProject on Instagram hosts weekly online events to support the mental wellbeing of the community. As an ally, you can donate to this service here

Sharing these events and resources may help out one of your Asian friends or followers more than you’ll ever know. 

6. Support Asian-American owned businesses. 

Asian-American unemployment has quadrupled during the pandemic and many businesses are suffering in the midst of racist and untrue assumptions about the spread of COVID. 

If you know of any Asian-owned businesses in your area make sure to show them support by buying their products and supporting their social media where possible. And if you don’t know of any, get to know some by doing your research.

You can also check out this list of 31 Asian-owned online businesses big and small that you can buy from. 

RELATED: 'Bling Empire' On Netflix Is Nowhere Near Reality For Asian-Americans In America

Alice Kelly is a writer living in Brooklyn, New York. She is a generalist with an interest in lifestyle, entertainment, and trending topics.