You are reading

City Deploying NYPD in Asian Communities Following Mass Shooting in Georgia

Roosevelt Avenue in Woodside is known for its Filipino community. The area is often referred to as ‘Little Manila’ (Photo: QueensPost)

March 17, 2021 By Allie Griffin

The city is deploying members of the NYPD counter-terrorism unit to Asian neighborhoods across the city after a gunman shot and killed eight people–including six Asian Americans–at three Georgia spas Tuesday night.

Mayor Bill de Blasio — who called the mass shooting “nothing less than domestic terrorism” — said he is increasing the police presence in areas where many Asian Americans live. He did not list the specific neighborhoods.

“We have to be clear that what we saw here is nothing less than domestic terrorism, people killed in their workplaces, going about their lives, simply because of their ethnicity, and a systematic effort to harm people,” de Blasio said at the start of his morning press briefing today.

“I want to assure all New Yorkers, and particularly Asian American New Yorkers that we are here for you, NYPD and all New Yorkers will stand by you in this incredibly difficult moment,” he added.

He said the shooting in the Atlanta area is extraordinarily distressing, coming at a time when there has been a surge in hate crimes against Asian Americans and while the country is still fighting COVID-19.

In New York City, there were 28 hate crimes against Asian Americans last year, compared to just three in 2019, according to the NYPD.

“We all need to understand the pain that Asian Americans are going through right now in this city and all over the country and we need to be there for them,” de Blasio said. “We have to stop Asian hate. We have to focus our energies on supporting our Asian brothers and sisters in this moment.”

For many Asian Americans, the shooting in Atlanta was the embodiment of their biggest fear, several officials said, after a year of increased stigma due to COVID-19 and racist terms like “China virus” or “Kung Flu.”

Queens Congress Member Grace Meng, an Asian American who has herself faced racist rhetoric, said members of her community have tried to warn others of such a scenario for at least a year.

“My heart breaks for those we lost in these senseless shootings. And this is all the more painful because Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) have spent the last year telling you that our communities were in danger,” Meng wrote on Twitter. “We cannot move forward — we cannot heal — until our country reckons with & stops AAPI hate.”

She also sharply denounced the 164 Republican Congress members who voted against a resolution she introduced in the House of Representatives in September calling for the condemnation of anti-Asian attacks.

“The 164 @GOP members who voted against my resolution to #StopAsianHate there is blood on their hands,” Meng tweeted Tuesday night following the shooting in Atlanta.

Queens State Sen. John Liu echoed Meng’s sentiment.

“How shocking is this really?” he tweeted next to an article link on the shooting. “The hate and bigotry on full display are sadly an extension of the violence and scapegoating Asian Americans have suffered throughout the Covid crisis.”

At least two candlelight vigils in Queens have already been planned to remember the victims of yesterday’s shooting.

Queens Borough President Donovan Richards, Council candidate Shekar Krishnan and other community leaders will host a candlelight vigil at Diversity Plaza in Jackson Heights at 7 p.m. tonight.

Another vigil is being planned in Sunnyside at 46th Street-Bliss Plaza at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday.

De Blasio has introduced multiple efforts to combat the rising anti-Asian hate across the city over the past year.

For instance, the NYPD created a task force in August to investigate and combat the spike. The Asian Hate Crime Task Force was filled with 25 Asian American NYPD detectives who collectively speak 11 different languages.

Last month, the city also released a toolkit to address hate crimes against Asian New Yorkers.

email the author: [email protected]

One Comment

Click for Comments 
ASensibleMan

“The 164 @GOP members who voted against my resolution to #StopAsianHate there is blood on their hands,” Meng tweeted

That’s simply flat out libel. She’s also not especially bright to think that passing a “resolution” to “condemn” something would make the slightest bit of difference. How do we elect such simpletons?

Reply

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

LaGuardia Community College receives federal funding to expand vocational training for the unemployed

LaGuardia Community College recently received more than $400,000 in federal funding to enhance and expand vocational training for underemployed New Yorkers in a city that is still working to recover from COVID-19 pandemic-induced job loss. The support was secured by U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand, Congresswoman Nydia Velázquez and former Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney.

LaGuardia Community College President Kenneth Adams explained that the school lost nearly a quarter of its students at the height of the pandemic due to the economic effects of the lockdown on low-income Queens households.

BP launches new advisory panel for youth to become civically engaged in the future of Queens

In an effort to get more young people involved in civics, Queens Borough President Donovan Richards has created a new advisory panel known as the Youth and Young Adult Council to introduce the “youngest and fiercest” community advocates to both community service and organization.

Members of the advisory body will advocate concerns through means of community engagement by participating in one of two cohorts. The first will be made up of high school representatives between the ages of 13 and 17, while the second cohort will be comprised of young adults between the ages of 18 and 25.

These Queens eateries are participating in the upcoming NYC Restaurant Week

NYC Restaurant Week is underway, so nix that skillet and bring family and friends to your favorite neighborhood spot, or get inspired and break bread somewhere new and different. During this special citywide culinary event, food-lovers will enjoy curated menus and prix-fixe prices that are easy on the wallet.

Bookings began on Jan. 17 and are available until Feb. 12, and you can reserve a table at 30 participating Queens restaurants, along with hundreds more across the five boroughs.