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Every day is a good day to fight for racial justice. Saying #StopAsianHate isn’t enough: we need to actively show it in our work toward anti-racism on personal, structural and institutional levels. We are grieving and we are outraged at the increased acts of violence against Asians and Asian Americans.. Together, we must continue the call for justice. Join us to commit to anti-racism work every day.

“Movements are born of critical connections.”

—Grace Lee Boggs

 

Racism

Because racism is a highly organized system, it operates on an individual and institutional level.

Individual: Comments, looks, talking over people, dismissing ideas and other interpersonal behaviors.

Institutional: Policies, practices and unwritten norms as well as the ways people uphold these practices.

 

We want to know what you think!

  • What does anti-AAPI racism look like on an individual level at your school/district?
  • What does anti-AAPI racism look like on an institutional level at your school/district?
  • What is the history of racism in the US….California…..your community?
  • How does the history of racism manifest in public education?
  • How are you working and teaching to support AAPI educators and students?
  • How are you making your classroom a more racially just space for all students?
  • How can we commit to anti-racism in our everyday lives — not just when there are violent acts and deaths?

Racial & Social Justice Webinar Series

Join REAC and CTA Equity Teams for webinars focused on racial and social justice every other Tuesday, including the webinar, “Supporting Asian American Pacific Islander Educators & Students.”

As educators, we can lead the way by teaching and celebrating AAPI history and culture, bringing awareness to these incidents, and letting your students, families and communities know you stand with the AAPI community.

-Telly Tse, CTA Board Member

Speaking Out

California Educators Condemn Violence Against Asian American Community

Our Home Should Be Safe

Home should always be a safe place, but it hasn’t been lately for nearly 21 million Asian Americans facing a rising tide of racism.

In the past year, Asian Americans reported nearly 4,000 hate incidents nationwide, with more than 1,500 occurring here in California.

This has created a climate where many of our Asian American and
Pacific Islander (AAPI) friends, colleagues and family are fearful to go outside and potentially become the target of hate-fueled violence.

These fears were terrifyingly realized in March when eight people
— including six Asian women — were murdered in a racist rampage
in Atlanta. We call out these vile acts of racism, and we condemn the violence against our AAPI community. We mourn with our AAPI family, and we commit to support you in the continued fight against racism and white supremacy. We stand with you.

“In this fight to build a safe and just America, our words, actions and persistence matter.”

Anti-Asian hate has always existed, but only recently has America started paying attention. Despite helping build California and our nation since the 1850s, Asian Americans have long faced racism, discrimination and even internment. The recent rise in racist rhetoric has led to the explosion of hate nationwide, targeting the AAPI community and other people of color.

I can only imagine how our Asian American students feel.

As a Black man in America, I know the pain of being hated for who
I am and how I look. We all deserve the right to live, work and breathe peacefully in our neighborhoods. We must continue the fight against racism in our communities — rising in solidarity like #BlackLivesMatter, La Causa, the Native rights movement, and countless other struggles against white supremacy in our history.

In this fight to build a safe and just America, our words, actions
and persistence matter. We have a duty to continue the work that
others before us started, in our schools and communities — and we
will not relent.

As we return to in-person schooling, we must commit to creating
safe, supportive environments, bringing awareness to these important issues, and letting our students and families know we stand with the AAPI community and all people fighting hate — because America should be a safe home for all of us.

E. Toby Boyd, CTA PRESIDENT, @etobyboyd

NEA President Becky Pringle statement on mass shootings in Atlanta

We must come together to demand safety and justice for the AAPI community

 

Washington—NEA President Becky Pringle issued the following statement in response to the increasing violence against the AAPI community. The most recent violent attack involved the murder of eight people, including six Asian women, by a white man in Atlanta.

“Whatever the color of our skin, the language we speak or where we were born, we all want to safely move through our communities without fearing for our lives or loved ones. The violence against our AAPI communities, especially AAPI women, is rooted in long-standing anti-Asian discrimination in this country. This trend of targeted hate against our friends, families, and communities has turned even more frequent and deadlier over the past year. Our communities are shattered and afraid.

“All of us are safer when we collectively address hate and bias, and recognize how when we work across racial differences we are stronger.  However, certain politicians aim to distract and divide us with hateful rhetoric, then look the other way while white supremacists grow their ranks to the point where violence by white men against AAPI, Black and brown people is normalized. The victims of this most recent murderous attack have had their lives and dreams stolen and the grief extends across the nation.

“Together, through our grief, pain and anger, AAPI, Black, brown and Indigenous people have been organizing and fighting back against racial terror and violence towards and in our communities.

Most immediately, NEA is demanding that:

  • AAPI communities be represented and heard at the local, state and federal levels as immediate needs for safety and care are being discussed and determined.
  • Policymakers address the impact that the easy access to gun purchases has on our safety.

“And, we as educators respond when we see or experience hate incidents, provide education from the earliest grades on the histories of our diverse communities to ensure Asian Americans, and all Americans, are seen as equally integral to American history and American society. The NEA stands with and for all of the families coping with their loss, and joins them in demanding justice.”

How is your local chapter or affiliate working toward anti-racism and supporting your AAPI students, educators and communities? Share with us! humanrightsdept@cta.org

NEA President Becky Pringle urges the Biden Administration to lift up, support, and protect the Asian American and Pacific Islander community.

Dear President Biden,

Our nation is based on a promise that every single person – Black, Latino, Asian, Indigenous or white – can pursue a better tomorrow. The National Education Association, representing over three million educators, welcomes the Biden Administration’s new memorandum disavowing hate against the Asian American community and urges the Administration to use every tool at its disposal to address rising hate crimes. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, thousands of Asian Americans have reported acts of hate and violence, and the vast majority live in a climate of fear.

The recent incidents of hate crimes against Asian Americans are not new. The increase in anti-Asian racism and discrimination hurts students, families, and communities across the country. Violence against our AAPI communities, especially our elders, is driven by anti-Asian discrimination that has a long-standing history in this country. This trend of targeted hate against our friends, families, and community leaders have turned even deadlier over the past year. We are especially troubled by the recent crimes against Asian Americans that are leaving many people to feel fearful once again. USC’s Race and Equity Center state that “in the last week, Asian Americans in the Bay Area alone have been victims of 20+ acts of assault or robbery.” Additionally, according to a report by Stop AAPI Hate, 1 in 4 Asian American youth are experiencing racist bullying.

The pandemic has deeply affected the AAPI community in ways that are not greatly discussed. For example, the fatality rate from COVID-19 for Asians is nearly triple that of all other ethnic groups in San Francisco. Asian Americans have had a higher unemployment rate than whites and Latinos. Also, 1 in 4 AAPI youth has experienced racist bullying during this pandemic. According to Pew Research, “58% of Asian Americans say it’s more common now than before COVID-19 to experience racism.”

While we recognize that the memorandum is an important first step, much more is needed for the Asian American community to enjoy the equal rights and access to opportunities that it deserves. We support the memorandum’s direction for the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and the COVID-19 health equity task force to issue guidance on cultural competency and language access. We further support the direction for the Department of Justice (DOJ) to engage with the AAPI community on issues related to hate crimes, hate incidents, and harassment, including ensuring that data is collected in a robust manner.

When our livelihoods, our safety, and our security are threatened, we must stand with and for each other to ensure that our leaders:

Uphold the Executive Orders and Presidential memos seeking justice for AAPIs.

Support Federal, state and local engagement with AAPI communities to promote community-driven solutions that will center the safety and well-being of AAPI, Black, brown and Indigenous communities.

Coordinate with elected state officials, specifically Governors, to ensure that states are creating mitigation plans and are appropriately handling the disproportionate rate of hate crimes against the AAPI community.

Direct the DOJ to not only engage the Asian American community but also to investigate and initiate civil action and to fully fund outreach and education initiatives.

While some may try to divide us, we know no matter who we are, what we look like or who we love, we are stronger when we stand with and for each other. This approach recognizes that in order to effectively address anti-Asian racism, we must work to end all forms of structural racism leveled at Black, brown and Indigenous communities.

All of us are safer when we address hate and bias, and recognize how when we work across racial differences we are stronger. The contributions of Asian American and Pacific Islander people to our culture and economy are vast. We urge the Administration to lift up, support and protect the AAPI community.

Sincerely,

Rebecca S. Pringle

President, National Education Association

Educate Yourself

CTA encourages everyone to join us in creating spaces to have conversations, build community and solidarity to address root causes of hate and violence.

Join an anti-hate organization, reach out to people who need support, donate your money and time – do whatever you can, but do something!

– Amy Lo, Student CTA

Take Action

 

Articles & Toolkits

 

Organizations Doing the Work

 

Books

 

TV, Videos & Film

 

Accounts to Follow on Instagram

Podcasts

 

Have a resource to add? Let us know! humanrights@cta.org

Anti-Racism: The active process of identifying and working toward eliminating racism by changing systems, organizational structures, policies, practices, norms and attitudes, so that power is redistributed and moves toward equity. See an expanded definition here.

BIPOC: Black, Indigenous, and People of Color. The term “builds authentic and lasting solidarity among Black, Indigenous and People of Color, in order to undo Native invisibility, anti-Blackness, dismantle white supremacy and advance racial justice.” (Source: The BIPOC Project)

Colorism: First coined by Alice Walker, colorism is used to refer to within group and between group prejudice and/or discrimination in favor of lighter skin tones and against darker skin tones. It isn’t racism, however there is a clear relationship.

Covert Racism: A form of racism disguised and subtle, rather than public or obvious. Covert racism is woven into the fabric of society and erases BIPOC through seemingly passive methods and underlying messages. See microaggressions.

Critical Race Theory: Activists and scholars interested in studying and transforming the relationship of race, racism and power. Educators are encouraged to read books and work by critical race theorists. 

Cultural Competency: Skill development for work across cultural lines. *Not* about access to resources, power and privilege. *Not* about systems.

Decolonization: Work toward undoing, dismantling the effects of the oppressor/oppressed regime or structures imposed by a colonial power. For a classroom, this can mean unlearning and removing oppressive curriculum, language, images, norms, etc. (Sources 1 2)

Diversity: Awareness and appreciation of difference. It’s *not* about access to resources, power and privilege. *Not* about systems and it’s often very vaguely used. Many schools and organization hyper-focus on this, and need to move beyond it.

Microaggressions: A statement, action or inference that is indirect, subtle discrimination against members of a marginalized group such as a racial or ethnic minority. An example might be saying “You’re so articulate” to a Black person (underlying assumption being, it’s surprising you can speak so well for a Black person.) Some folks may refer to microaggressions as “Your racism is showing.” (See video 1, video 2)

Optical/Performative Allyship: Solidarity that only serves at the surface level to lift up and provide a platform for the ally. Makes a statement but doesn’t go beneath the surface and is not aimed at breaking away from the systems of power that oppress. (Source: Latham Thomas) Folks should work to center the movement, not themselves.

School to Prison Pipeline: A disturbing national trend where children are funneled out of public schools and into the juvenile and criminal justice systems. Most of these children are students of color, have learning disabilities and/or histories of poverty, abuse, or neglect. Instead of receiving additional educational and counseling support services, they are isolated, punished, suspended and pushed out.

Social Justice/Equity: Examines systems and history and how they impact individuals and looks squarely at access to resources, power and privileges, and asks “Who has it?” It’s about big picture and daily lives. 

Racism: A system (consisting of structures, policies, practices and norms) that structures opportunity and assigns value based on socially constructed categories of people. It unfairly disadvantages some individuals and communities and provides advantages and access to others. The system of racism does not allow the realization of one’s full potential because it denies access to resources, power and privilege.

Whiteness: Like race, whiteness is a social construct rather than an essential characteristic or biological fact; is used as cultural property, and provides resources, power and privilege to those who are considered white, pass as white, or are given “honorary” white status

White Fragility: Describes the disbelieving defensiveness that white people exhibit when their ideas about race and racism are challenged—and particularly when they feel implicated in white supremacy. (Source: Robin DiAngelo). “White tears” are a symptom of white fragility.

White Privilege: The resources, power and privilege provided to people who are considered white; an exemption of social, political, and/or economic burdens placed on BIPOC; benefitting from societal structuring that prioritizes white people and whiteness.

White Savior Complex: Refers to a white person who assumes that folks of color need their “help” and “saving.” We see this trope play out in the media, racist curriculum and histories, choices made about traveling abroad, foreign policy, organizational structures and more. (Sources: 1 2)

White Supremacy: A historically based, institutionally perpetuated system of exploitation and oppression of continents, nations and peoples of color by white people for the purpose of maintaining and defending a system of resources, power and privilege.

Have a word or term you’d like added, expanded or edited? Let us know! humanrightsdept@cta.org

Caucuses

The Pacific Asian American Caucus of the California Teachers Association exists to advocate for Asian and Pacific Islander educators, students, and communities both within the organization as well as in society at large. Membership is open to any CTA member interested in the issues facing these students and communities regardless of ethnicity. The caucus meets at CTA State Councils as well as at many CTA conferences to discuss issues and bring forward solutions. Please join us!

Caucus members advise, educate and lobby CTA State Council of Education and the CTA Board of Directors on issues of concern to the varying caucuses. Membership in CTA caucuses is open to all CTA members.

 

REAC

Learn more about REAC here.

 

Equity Teams

Coming soon!

Remember that consciousness is power. Consciousness is education and knowledge. Consciousness is becoming aware. It is the perfect vehicle for students. Consciousness-raising is pertinent for power, and be sure that power will not be abusively used, but used for building trust and goodwill domestically and internationally. Tomorrow’s world is yours to build.

-Yuri Kochiyama