Hate Crimes Act signed into law

by | May 21, 2021 | AAPI Partners, NAAAP Blog, National News | 0 comments

NAAAP’s Statement on the passage of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act


Yesterday, President Joe Biden signed the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act into law, a historic move that will enhance support for Asian Americans and victims of hate crimes during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

NAAAP applauds the tireless efforts of Representative Grace Meng (D-NY) and Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI), sponsors of the Act, the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, and all the Members of the House and Senate who fostered bipartisan support to pass this overdue legislation.

The Hate Crimes Act is an essential step toward addressing historic and systemic racism and the recent rise of anti-Asian hate.  The Hate Crime Act will increase resources and support for those reporting hate crimes and ensure that these materials are accessible online, in multiple languages. The bill also calls on the Department of Justice to designate a specific official to review hate crimes relating to COVID-19. 

But the story doesn’t start or end here. 

As we know, anti-Asian hate is not a new phenomenon. It wasn’t started by the COVID-19 pandemic—and it won’t automatically end when the pandemic comes to a close.

“Since the start of the pandemic, Asian Americans have borne a double burden – occupational exposure to COVID-19 and social exposure to racism and hate,” said Cyndy Yu-Robinson, Executive Director of NAAAP. “Strong leadership of elected AAPI representatives like Grace Meng, Mazie Hirono, Tammy Duckworth, and Judy Chu and national attention from non-Asian allies galvanized the AAPI community to work in solidarity for humanity and inclusion.”

That future will take all of us.

A future without hate and harm to AAPIs will require political and policy change at the federal level. It will depend on local leaders who can understand their communities’ unique needs. And it will require NAAAP’s persistence to act: to put forth highly qualified AAPIs into the C-suite, to lead unconscious bias trainings, to be vocal and visible about microaggressions and marginalization in our workplaces, to connect new members with resources and support, and to be inclusive leaders in every setting where we show up. 

This Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month we celebrate the success of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, and we reaffirm our commitment to addressing systemic racism —Together as One.


About NAAAP: About NAAAP: The National Association of Asian American Professionals (NAAAP) is the premier leadership organization for Asian professionals in North America, with 25 active chapters, several thousand active members, and a reach of more than 20,000 professionals.  Since 1982, NAAAP has operated as a nonprofit to inspire, cultivate, empower and connect leaders in all major industries and many communities through professional development and community service.  For more information, please visit www.naaap.org.

StopAsianHate Resources 

National registry – Report a hate incident in English or Asian language to StopAAPIHate

Ways to support the Asian Community [LoveHasNoLabels, link ]

Donate/Support Asian Americans Advancing Justice’s work [AAJC.org, link]

Selected news articles

Biden signs bill addressing hate crimes against Asians, New York Times, May 20, 2021

Biden signs bill aimed at addressing rise in anti-Asian hate crimes CNN.com May 20, 2021

Biden, says ‘silence is complicity’, signs COVID hate crimes bill into law Reuters.com, May 20, 2021