New York City is stepping up its fight against anti-Asian hate crimes with 200 additional surveillance cameras.
The cameras were installed last Thursday as part of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s hate crimes action plan, with more to come in the future.
“I want to ensure every New Yorker that you have the right to walk down our streets, ride our transit system and live your everyday lives unmolested, and not targeted in unprovoked attacks for the way you speak, look or what you believe,” said Deputy Inspector Jessica Corey, commander of the New York Police Department’s Hate Crimes Unit, according to CBS New York.
While February statistics show a decrease in the city’s overall crime rate, attacks against Asian Americans have reportedly gone up.
Overall, the city recorded 29 anti-Asian hate crimes in 2020, 24 of which were attributed to “coronavirus motivation.”
Just last week, a 56-year-old Malaysian immigrant was senselessly beaten while entering the F train station at East Broadway and Rutgers Street. The suspect remains at large.
“I don’t know why he attacked me,” the victim told ABC7 News. “Maybe because I’m Asian?”
WANTED for ASSAULT: On 3/2/21 @ 8:50 PM, outside the East Broadway & Rutgers St “F” train station.
The subject attacked a 56 year-old Asian male until he was unconscious. Any info call them @ 800-577-TIPS or DM @NYPDTips Reward up to $2500. pic.twitter.com/VGYvaqonJY
— NYPD Hate Crimes (@NYPDHateCrimes) March 4, 2021
Deputy Inspector Stewart Loo, head of the Asian Hate Crimes Task Force, attributed the spike in incidence to the willingness of younger Asian Americans to report the attacks.
“This is not a problem that’s new. This should have been reported many years ago,” Loo told CNN.
On Saturday, about 100 people in Queens’ Sunnyside neighborhood gathered to rally against the violence toward Asian Americans.
“This is not just in the last couple of weeks. This is not just a year ago when I would walk around and wonder, I don’t know what’s going to kill me first, COVID or racism? This is not new; it is underreported,” said advocate Sharon Lee, who attended the rally, according to QNS.
Aside from additional security cameras, New York City has also launched a new webpage for reporting anti-Asian incidents.
Do you have a hate incident to report? Help us document the recent rise in hate crimes against Asian Americans by going to STOP AAPI HATE to report an incident. Please stay safe out there.
Feature Image via Getty