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Asian Violence Awareness Statement from BUILD

Published March 24, 2021

Dear CSULB BUILD Family,

Asian Violence AwarenessIt is with a heavy heart that we respond to yet another string of hateful, racist acts that are occurring in our nation targeting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. The lives of 8 innocent people were taken in Atlanta, GA. As a Program, we would like to first honor the lives of these victims by recognizing their names: Daoyou Feng, Hyun Jung Grant, Suncha Kim, Paul Andre Michels, Soon Chung Park, Xiaojie Tan, Delaina Ashley Yaun, Yong Ae Yue, and the severely wounded Elcias Hernandez-Ortiz, and condemn this hateful act.

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic there have been over 1600 reported acts of abuse on people of Asian and Pacific Islander descent in our own state of California. These are not isolated incidents, and we recognize they are a part of a pattern of violence stemming from White supremacy. We have experienced the rise of xenophobia and anti-Asian sentiment stoked by politicians and White supremacists who have weaponized this pandemic for political and personal gain. This latest case of domestic terrorism is another example of abuse directed at people, especially women, of Asian descent.

Since last summer, we as a program have strived to strengthen our efforts to make diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) even more of a focus within all aspects of BUILD to fulfill our commitment to fight for access and equity in higher education. This includes the formation of a DEI working group where we reflect and develop plans to make changes in our program to foster equity and inclusive practices and implement our plans to stop racism. These recent events continue to remind us that there is still much work to do here at CSULB and in our communities and nation.

To our current students, alumni, and colleagues, we acknowledge the pain that many of you are feeling. We remain committed to examining and educating ourselves on the intersectionality of race, gender, and class and how it shapes the content and manifestation of individual and societal prejudice and discrimination towards the Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color including Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. Please know that we are here for you and are working to create safe spaces where you can share your fears, pain and anger. 

In unity,

CSULB BUILD Program