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February 19th, 2021

Andrew Yang to Join NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams at NYS Assembly Member Ron Kim’s Town Hall Addressing Rise in Violence Against Asian Americans and Leaders from the Asian American Federation and Center for Anti-Violence Education

**RELEASE** February 19th, 2021

Contact: press@yangforny.com

New York, NYToday, Andrew Yang, Democratic Candidate for Mayor of New York City, announced he will be be a featured panelist in a town hall hosted by NYS Assemblymember Ron Kim, alongside fellow panelists NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams, Jo-Ann Yoo, Executive Director of the Asian American Federation, and Rej Joo, of the Center for Anti-Violence Education.

What: Virtual town hall focused on the alarming 900% increase in hate violence targeting Asian Americans in New York City. When: Sunday February 21st at 6pm Where: Webinar via Zoom; streamed on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Host: Ron Kim, NYS Assemblymember Panelists:

  • Andrew Yang, Candidate for Mayor of New York City
  • Jumaane Williams, NYC Public Advocate
  • Jo-Ann Yoo, Executive Director of Asian American Federation
  • Rej Joo, Center for Anti-Violence Education

Said Andrew Yang, “The massive rise in anti-Asian violence in New York is heartbreaking and devastating. My wife Evelyn grew up in Queens and I'm the son of Taiwanese immigrants. While the NYPD must fully investigate these crimes, we as New Yorkers need to make an unwavering statement that anti-Asian violence won’t be tolerated in our City. I am proud to be working with Public Advocate Williams, Assembly Member Kim, and this incredible group of advocates to equip New Yorkers with the tools to help combat the rise in intolerance and violence against people of all backgrounds. We have to come together and speak up to defend one another.”

“We need to address the alarming rise in violence against Asian Americans here in New York City, and all across the country. We must do more to hold perpetrators accountable, raise awareness, and keep our communities safe. While there has been more attention on these attacks in the last few weeks, the problem has been growing since the start of the pandemic.” Added Assemblymember Ron Kim, “We need leadership who will actively fight the spread of misinformation and allowance for public intolerance that is spurring these attacks. These are important conversations that need to be had and are not getting enough attention. New Yorkers need tools to protect themselves and their neighbors against racially motivated crimes.”

Said Jo-Ann Yoo, Executive Director of the Asian American Federation, “Asian Americans have been suffering from the economic impact of racism since January 2020 when our small businesses started to close due to unfounded fear that shopping in our stores and eating in our restaurants would somehow increase your chance of catching COVID. Asian New Yorkers’ suffering has been made so much worse by the racism and violent attacks we have been facing for the past year. At this time of tremendous uncertainty, fear and frustration, we ask our neighbors and friends of all communities to stand with us to eradicate hate in our communities. The last two violent attacks happened when there were plenty of bystanders, yet so few folks stepped up to help. We ask our fellow New Yorkers to look out for each other, protect and care for each other. This is the only way we'll get through this pandemic.”

Said Rej Joo of the Center for Anti-Violence Education, “Difficult times invite us to step up as New Yorkers and find community based solutions. One of those solutions can be learning and equipping ourselves with upstander (active bystander) tools when we witness acts of violence/harassment. We (CAE) have heard from survivors of hate violence that one of the most devastating impacts was when people just watched and no one (attempted to) intervene nor simply checked on them afterwards. We may not always have control over the perpetrator's action, but we can always provide support to those who experience violence/harassment. Upstander work helps survivors to not suffer alone and in silence.”

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