Activists rallied across the tri-state area Sunday to demand an end to anti-Asian hate crimes, which have skyrocketed since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- A rally took place, today, covering a whole lot of ground and dedicated to fighting for justice for Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders. Since the start of the pandemic, anti-Asian hate crimes have skyrocketed 145% in 16 of America's largest cities. The event began here in Philadelphia, but ended in New York City. Action News reporter Beccah Hendrickson reports.
QUNBIN XIONG: Remember, injustice to one ethnic group is an injustice to all Americans.
- Qunbin Xiong says, the rise in anti-Asian hate crimes is leaving many people in his community scared to leave their homes.
- We are living in fear. I mean, I know a couple of the young kids are being harassed on the subway.
- He joined the group, AAPI For Change, for this rally at Philadelphia's City Hall.
- Number one, register to vote, and vote on every single election.
- The activists are also traveling to Trenton in New York City to raise awareness about the 150% increase in crimes against the Asian-American and Pacific Islander community since the pandemic began, including this, where a man attacked an Asian woman in Center City on Easter Sunday.
DAVID OH: One of the ways that we can address all the issues that we're facing in this city and around our country from gun violence to Asian-American hate and crime is through education, communication, and then finding ways to work together.
- Council members state senators and high school students join the rally too.
- They were people. They are human beings.
- Ian Sun is a sophomore at Radnor High School. He says, after eight people were killed in the Atlanta spa shootings in March, he felt the need to speak out against the racism facing his community.
IAN SUN: Words hurt, and words kill.
- The rallies also coincide with the start of Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, which is recognizing the outstanding contributions of the community. Philadelphia City Hall is holding a virtual town hall for the community on Thursday. At City Hall, Beccah Hendrickson, Channel 6, Action News.