WHEREAS, the Asian American and Pacific Islander (henceforth referred to as AAPI) population is diverse and includes many groups of origin such as China, Japan, Laos, Vietnam, the Philippines, Macau, Samoa, Cambodia, Fiji, India, Taiwan, Pakistan, Korea, Bangladesh, Indonesia, Guam Malaysia, Mongolia, Srilanka, Bhutan, and more; and
WHEREAS, AAPI community members have been part of the rich ethnic diversity of Sonoma County and have contributed greatly to the economic and cultural vibrancy of the region; and
WHEREAS, the AAPI population has faced historical and structural racism in both Sonoma County and in the United States; and
WHEREAS, the COVID-19 pandemic has been falsely blamed on the AAPI population; and
WHEREAS, the number of hate crimes against Asian American, to include verbal harassment, being spat upon, subjected to racial slurs and being physically attached, in 16 major cities increased by 150% from 2019 to 2020, while the overall rate of hate crimes decreased by 7% in the same time period; and
WHEREAS, between March 2020 and February 2021, Stop AAPI Hate documented nearly 3,800 self-reports of anti-Asian hate incidents, with Asian women being more than twice as likely to be attacked as Asian men; and
WHEREAS, AAPI women experience this racism in forms compounded by sexism, including exotification and hypersexualization; and
WHEREAS, in 1854, the California Supreme Court reinforced racism against AAPI immigrants in People v Hall, ruling that people of AAPI descent could not testify against a White person in court, virtually guaranteeing that Whites could escape punishment for anti-Asian violence.
WHEREAS, the 1875 Page Act was one of the earliest pieces of federal legislation to restrict immigration to the United States in the 19th century and was used to essentially prevent all Chinese women from migrating to the United States on the racist and sexist assumption they were all sex workers; and
WHEREAS, in 1941, after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, the US government forced all tens of thousands of Japanese immigrants and Japanese Americans into US internment camps, living in extreme conditions, for the duration of the war; and
WHEREAS, after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, hate crimes spiked against Muslims and those perceived to be Muslim, including people of South Asian descent; and
WHEREAS, the rise of AAPI hate crimes have led to the horrific shooting and mass murder of eight people, including six women of Asian descent, Xiaojie Tan, Daoyou Feng, Soon Chung Park, Hyun Grant, Suncha Kim, and Yong Ae Yue, in Atlanta on March 16, 2021; and
WHEREAS, AAPI residents of Sonoma County have voiced their recent experiences with anti-AAPI racism in our communities; and
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women condemns the acts of anti-AAPI violence across the country and locally; and
THEREFORE, BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women stands in solidarity with AAPI women and commits to educating ourselves on the histories of racism against the AAPI community while uplifting and celebrating the contributions of the AAPI communities of past, present, and future.
THEREFORE, BE IT FINALLY RESOLVED THAT the Sonoma County Commission on the Status of Women will donate $750 to the Asian Pacific Solidarity Fund with the passage of this resolution.
THE FORGOING RESOLUTION was put forth Put forth by 2nd District Commissioners Trisha Almond and Caitlin Quinn, and was duly adopted on the 13thday of May, 2021 with the following vote:
Ayes: 10 Noes: 0 Absent: 3 Abstained: 1