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Labor and Economic Opportunity

Michigan Civil Rights Commission, Michigan Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission Issue Statement on Increase in Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans

Contacts:

MDCR - Vicki Levengood 517-241-7978

MAPACC – Camara Lewis 517-930-4928

February 17, 2021

Lansing, MI—The Michigan Civil Rights Commission (MCRC) and the Michigan Asian Pacific American Affairs Commission (MAPAAC) have issued statements in response to a rise of violence and hate crimes targeting Asian Americans and individuals of Asian descent in Michigan and around the country.

“Over the last year, bias incidents and hate crimes targeting Asian Americans have escalated, both in number and in intensity,” said MCRC Commissioner Anupama Kosaraju. “It is important that as a state and a nation we do more to put an end to these incidents. We urge anyone who has been the victim of a hate crime or has witnessed such an act to contact the office of Attorney General Dana Nessel immediately. If you feel you have faced discrimination or bias based on your ethnicity, you have the right to file a complaint with the Michigan Department of Civil Rights. When people begin to face consequences for these acts of hate, it will put others on notice that they too may have a price to pay for such actions.”

"MAPAAC has been horrified to hear about the rising incidences of anti-Asian American sentiment and violence targeting our community. Xenophobic and racist rhetoric and discrimination is harmful to all of us,” said Ayesha Ghazi Edwin, Chair of MAPAAC. “We urge elected officials and community leaders to vehemently condemn hate in all its forms and remind us that discrimination is counter to who we are as Americans. We also urge members of the Asian American community to report incidences of hate to your local police department, to file a complaint with the Attorney General's office and the Michigan Department of Civil Rights."

Individuals can contact the Department of the Attorney General Hate Crimes Unit if they have knowledge of, or are a victim of, a crime motivated by hate by phone at 313-456-0200 or by email at HateCrimes@michigan.gov. To file a complaint of unlawful discrimination, contact the Michigan Department of Civil Rights by phone at 1-800-482-3604 or go online to Michigan.gov/MDCR and click on the link to File A Complaint.

The Michigan Civil Rights Commission was created by the Michigan Constitution to safeguard constitutional and legal guarantees against discrimination. The Commission is charged with investigating alleged discrimination against any person because of religion, race, color or national origin, sex, age, marital status, height, weight, arrest record, and physical and mental disability. The Michigan Department of Civil Rights serves as the operational arm of the Commission.

MAPAAC works to advance the full and equal participation of Asian Pacific Americans in the building of a greater Michigan. Learn more about MAPAAC at www.michigan.gov/MAPAAC.

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