Republican Gov. Larry Hogan announced his plans to begin community and law enforcement initiatives that will work to combat Asian American discrimination throughout the state.
Announcement: Hogan announced his plan to implement anti-discriminatory initiatives at a press conference on Monday.
- His proposals to combat anti-Asian hate crimes include ways to improve training for law enforcement, community resources and educators.
- “I’m calling on other leaders across the country in both the public and private sectors and across the political spectrum to use their voices to speak out clearly and forcefully to condemn attacks against our Asian American community,” Hogan said.
- Hogan is married to Yumi Hogan, who was born in South Korea. He said that his daughters, who are Asian American, have suffered racial discrimination since the start of the pandemic, and one of them, Jaymi Sterling, had the idea to form The Asian American Hate Crimes Workgroup.
- The workgroup, now led by former Maryland U.S. State Attorney Robert K. Hur, meets a few times a month to make recommendations to the governor on how to tackle anti-Asian hate.
- Hur said that community groups and individuals have a role to play in addition to the government’s initiatives.
Public Safety: Hogan proposed to provide $1 million in funding for translation applications for law enforcement and hate crime victim services.
- In addition to the implementation of translation apps (like Google Translate), Hogan also suggested offering incentives for multilingual officers, encouraging diversity in recruiting.
- He also proposed to update hate crime and racial bias training for law enforcement agencies.
- Hogan suggested designating a Maryland State Police commander to handle hate crimes and racially biased incidents, as well as launching a partnership between the Maryland Coordination and Analysis Center (MCAC) and the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives (GOCI) to share data.
- Hogan also emphasized the importance of expediting guidance for the implementation of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act and called on the U.S. Department of Justice to attend to the matter.
Community Resources: Hogan proposed a 67% increase from $3 million to $5 million in funding for the government program Protecting Against Hate Crimes.
- Hogan proposed to make 211 Maryland, a health and human services hotline, accessible for reporting hate and bias incidents and providing information about services and resources in Asian languages.
- He also proposed an effort to publish the “How To Report Hate Crimes & Incidents” guide in Asian languages.
- He developed alternative reporting channels, including community organizations, nonprofits and faith centers.
Educators and Students: Hogan also recognized the importance of developing resources for the education of Asian Americans.
- Hogan plans on directing the Maryland Center for School Safety to develop resources for educators, parents and students on how to identify and report hate and bias incidents.
- He also proposed the implementation of Asian American history education for Maryland State Department of Education teachers.
- Hogan has also emphasized encouraging further Asian American participation in journalism and will work with the University System of Maryland Merrill College of Journalism to offer more scholarships and fellowships.
- He also wants to provide education resources online for educators and members of the public.
Featured Images via Governor Larry Hogan