- COVID-19 being labelled as “China virus” has contributed to unprovoked attacks on Asian-Americans.
- One group in Oakland, California has bonded to escort their Asian-American neighbors.
- Compassion in Oakland aims to spread solidarity and healing.
If the innate goodness of humans toward each other have been in the news with the coronavirus pandemic, there are also people who reacted adversely to it. And for some, it also brought out racist sentiments as it showed the disparities among communities. And still, there are people who blame Asian-Americans for the disease as it originated from China.
So, when hate incidents happened in Oakland, California, one group did not let it go unnoticed.
It started when Jacob Azevedo saw unprovoked attacks on Asian-Americans. He raised the call on social media and it was not long until nearly 300 volunteers answered the call to escort their Asian-American neighbors. It gave birth to Compassion in Oakland.
The deed was to simply offer to walk with anyone in Oakland’s Chinatown neighborhood for them to be safe.
Azevedo said, “I wasn’t intending to be some kind of vigilante. I just wanted to offer people some kind of comfort.”
Compassion in Oakland’s mission is simple: “We strive to provide the Oakland Chinatown Community with a resource for promoting safety and community. We aim to embrace the often forgotten, underserved, and vulnerable. We promote compassion not indifference, unity as opposed to divisiveness. Fostering a more caring and safer Oakland for all.”
According to Azevedo, people of color should stand in solidarity with the Asian-American community. The organization has been receiving help and support for the cause from different racial backgrounds.
Azevedo said that the racial tensions arising from the COVID-19 being labelled as the “China virus” need to be addressed. “In general, our communities need healing. This is an issue that’s been ongoing for a while,” he added.
Stop APPI Hate Co-Founder Cynthia Choi echoes the Compassion in Okland’s sentiments. “This is a problem and issue that doesn’t get a lot of attention, especially in low-income communities. And of course, the pandemic, I think has exacerbated the conditions and exposed racial disparities,” Choi said.
The Compassion in Oakland has encouraged elders to go out of their house and be safe with the group’s presence.
Source: Tank’s Good News