Ahead of Lunar New Year, California’s Asian American community faces rise in attacks

Local News

(KTXL) — As the Lunar New Year begins Friday, many in the Asian American community are on edge after numerous attacks this week in the Bay Area and throughout this pandemic.

A video has been making its rounds on Instagram of two women being attacked just steps from safety inside a home.

In the middle of the day, a Ring security camera captured the women, believed to be of Asian descent, who were robbed by two men.

“Watching that video was so disturbing,” said Manjusha Kulkarni, the executive director of Asian Pacific Policy and Planning Council. “We may not know, have all the information right, whether it was racially motivated. We know that our members of the community are scared and fearful of being attacked.”

It is believed the video was taken in Elk Grove. Local law enforcement told FOX40 no police report has been filled yet that matches what is seen in the video.

Kulkarni said it’s important to report any incident to law enforcement.

She also said the attack is part of a concerning and disturbing trend.

New data released by Stop AAPI Hate shows from last March through the end of 2020, they have received over 2,800 reported incidents of racism and discrimination targeting Asian Americans across the U.S. Of those were 126 incidents of anti-Asian hate involving Asian Americans over 60 years old.

A recent incident involved an Elk Grove restaurant, Umai Bar and Grill, which was covered with hate speech last December.

“Especially to see right now that elders in our communities are being targeted, especially this time of year as we are celebrating Lunar New Year,” Kulkarni said. “This should be a time of joy and celebration, instead it’s a time of fear and trepidation.”

She added urgent action needs to be taken by elected officials on all levels to put an end to the attacks that have taken place throughout the pandemic, whether it comes in the form of public education or legislation.

“Our numbers are really just the tip of the iceberg in terms of what is going on,” Kulkarni explained.

Sacramento police said this week they are monitoring for these types of incidents.

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