Two UW-Madison departments and one program issue statements in support for Asian and Asian American Communities in response to bias incidents around campus and share additional resources for students, faculty, and staff.
CLS FACULTY STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR ASIAN AND ASIAN AMERICAN COMMUNITIES
The Chican@ & Latin@ Studies faculty reaffirms the Program’s commitment to social and racial justice on campus and in the broader community. In the wake of recent bias incidents around the University of Wisconsin campus, we call for full and deep solidarity with students, colleagues, and neighbors of Asian descent. As scholars of race and ethnicity in the Americas, we are disappointed but not surprised to see racialized fears about disease re-emerge during the COVID-19 crisis. Sadly, the rhetoric that links people seen as ‘foreign’ or ‘alien’ with disease and dirt has never ceased to racialize interpersonal interaction and public pronouncements in the United States. It is time for us all to cultivate good sense as we seek real solutions to public health problems and problems of social inequality that plague members of our society, irrespective of race/ethnicity/gender.
We commend our colleague Lori Lopez, whose recent public statements on this topic set an example for all of us and highlight the ways we can all #WashTheHate. We also commend the thoughtful and swift responses by Chancellor Rebecca Blank, Deputy Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion Patrick Sims, and Letters & Science Interim Dean Eric Wilcots. We encourage members of the CLS familia to participate in today’s virtual town hall meeting with the Chancellor. We also encourage students who experience or witness harassment and discrimination to file bias incident reports with the Office of the Dean of Students. Faculty and staff may file complaints with the Office of Compliance. These incidents highlight the importance of our work teaching and studying the legacy and reality of racial inequality and xenophobia in the United States. We pledge to continue that work as we adjust to drastic and catastrophic changes.
DEPARTMENT OF GEOGRAPHY STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR ASIAN AND ASIAN AMERICAN COMMUNITIES
The Department of Geography reaffirms its commitment to fostering inclusive learning and working environments that embrace the diversity of experiences, perspectives, and interests represented in our communities and the broader world. Our community, scholarship, teaching, and public work are stronger through the participation of individuals with different perspectives and backgrounds. In the wake of recent bias and hate incidents on or near the University of Wisconsin campus, online and elsewhere in the country, we call for full and deep solidarity with students, faculty and staff members, and neighbors of Asian descent. We reject the racist and xenophobic public and interpersonal discourse and actions stoked by racialized myths about disease that have re-emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic and surrounding crisis. We urge our communities to work together to seek real solutions to public health problems and problems of social inequities that harm members of our society, irrespective of their identity and origin.
We encourage students who experience or witness harassment and discrimination to file bias incident reports with the Office of the Dean of Students. Faculty and staff may file complaints with the Office of Compliance.
DEPARTMENT OF AFRO-AMERICAN STUDIES STATEMENT OF SUPPORT FOR THE ASIAN AND ASIAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY
In these days of pandemic crisis, the Afro-American Studies Department stands in solidarity and community with Asian and Asian American, people both on and off campus. We abhor the xenophobia that has inaccurately and unfairly blamed these communities for the spread of the current COVID-19 virus. As scholars of race and African American experience, we understand the harm that is inflicted when communities of color are unjustly scapegoated, harassed and attacked. We applaud Chancellor Rebecca Blank, the Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion Patrick Sims, and the Interim L&S Dean Eric Wilcott for their swift condemnation of this hateful behavior. We also commend the Asian American Studies Program and all those who organized and participated in the virtual town hall against hate and in support of people of Asian descent. And finally, we urge anyone who is victimized by or witness to racialized harassment or discrimination to report these incidents. Students can file bias incident reports with the Office of the Dean of Students. Faculty and staff can report incidents to the Office of Compliance.