FRESNO, California (KSEE) – “We have young people who are afraid to leave their homes. They’re worried that their school or workplace could be the next site of a mass shooting and for too long these issues and struggles have been ignored,” said Katie Moua, the Director of Programs, Hmong Innovating Politics.
Minority-focused support organizations and Fresno city leaders came together in a press conference on Tuesday to announce plans to combat Asian hate in the community.
“We’re here to denounce the hate, racism, and xenophobia that has been leveled against our Asian-American brothers and sisters,” said Fresno City Councilmember Nelson Esparza.
“But more than denouncing hate, really trying to make sure that this is much more than a symbolic gesture,” said Fresno City Councilmember Esmeralda Soria.
“And for far too long the southeast Asian and Asian community of Fresno has been asking for a city that looks like them, speaks their multiple languages, and has their lived experiences and I am hopeful now with Mayor Dyer that he will follow through,” said Fresno City Councilmember Miguel Arias.
Mayor Dyer revealed one of the steps of answering that call–a proposal to create an Office of Community Affairs position filled by someone who is Asian. With a goal to serve Asians and other minorities as a liaison with education, government agencies, immigration services, and other needed resources.
Dyer ended today’s announcement with one powerful message.
“From the City of Fresno and from my office…We won’t tolerate hate in our community regardless of who that hate is demonstrated against. Quite frankly, people who commit hate crimes are people who are cowards.”
The “Stop Asian Hate” resolution will be discussed and voted on Thursday and lists topics like working with community-based organizations on creating safe spaces and creating solutions addressing public safety.