Meng Reintroduces Resolution to Denounce Anti-Asian Hate Related to COVID-19

Feb 24, 2021
Press Release
Measure is an updated version of the Congresswoman’s resolution that passed the House in September
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-NY), First Vice Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, announced today that she reintroduced her resolution in the House of Representatives that denounces the anti-Asian sentiment that has occurred in New York and across the nation since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. The measure is an updated version of Meng’s resolution that was passed by the House in September.
 
“Although the House passed my resolution five months ago, during the last session of Congress, we continue to see many despicable and disgusting acts of hate and violence being committed against Asian Americans,” said Meng. “In light of the recent dramatic increase of anti-Asian hate incidents across our country, we all must coalesce and renew our efforts to condemn all manifestations of racism, xenophobia, discrimination, and anti-Asian sentiment and scapegoating, which is why I have reintroduced my resolution in the new Congress. It is also critical for the new Congress, which includes many new U.S. Representatives, to take a strong stand against this prejudice and bigotry as well. Over the past year, there have been some 3,000 reported incidents of anti-Asian hate crimes including a recent rise in assaults against elderly Asian Americans. Although President Trump has left office, his past rhetoric and use of disparaging terms such as ‘Chinese virus’ and ‘Kung-flu’ continues to heighten people’s fears of COVID-19, and fuel everything from verbal assaults to physical attacks towards those of Asian descent. We must denounce any and all anti-Asian sentiment of any form, and stand against the sickening intolerance and violence that is leaving a terrible stain on our nation’s history, especially during this moment of an unprecedented public health crisis. I urge all of my colleagues to support this resolution.“
 
Meng’s new resolution (H.Res.151), which has 108 cosponsors, updates statistics and incidents of anti-Asian discrimination related to COVID-19 including recent high-profile attacks in New York City including in the Congresswoman’s district in Flushing, Queens, as well as assaults in California. Like the original measure, it:
 
  • Condemns and denounces all forms of anti-Asian sentiment, including those related to COVID-19;
  • Recognizes that the health and safety of all Americans, no matter their background, must be the utmost priority;
  • Condemns all manifestations of expressions of racism, xenophobia, discrimination, anti-Asian sentiment, scapegoating, and ethnic or religious intolerance;
  • Calls on Federal law enforcement officials, working with State and local agencies—
  • To expeditiously investigate and document all credible reports of hate crimes, harassment, bullying, and threats against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in the United States;
  • To expand collection of data and public reporting to document the rise of incidents of hate crimes relating to COVID–19; and
  • To hold the perpetrators of those crimes, incidents, or threats accountable and bring such perpetrators to justice, including through investigation and prosecution;
  • Recommits the United States to serving as a world leader in building more inclusive, diverse, and tolerant societies—
  • By prioritizing language access and inclusivity in communication practices; and
  • By combating misinformation and discrimination that put Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders at risk.
 
The updated resolution also includes two new provisions:
 
  • Calls on the Attorney General to work with State and local agencies and Asian American and Pacific Islander community-based organizations to prevent discrimination, and expand culturally competent and linguistically appropriate education campaigns on public reporting of hate crimes;
  • Calls on the Secretary of Health and Human Services, in coordination with the COVID-19 Health Equity Task Force and Asian American and Pacific Islander community-based organizations to issue guidance describing best practices to mitigate racially discriminatory language in describing the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
Meng’s original resolution, which she introduced in March 2020, passed the House 243 to 164, and was endorsed by more than 500 organizations across the nation.
 
House resolutions do not need to be passed by the Senate and do not require the signature of the President.
 
Last month, President Biden signed a presidential memorandum to address anti-Asian sentiment and hate crimes against Asian Americans that included Meng’s resolution, and other pieces of legislation she sponsored.
 
The Congresswoman also joined New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio yesterday to discuss her leadership and efforts to combat anti-Asian hate related to the coronavirus.