On Tuesday night, eight lives were taken in a series of violent attacks in Atlanta. While an investigation is under way, we know that six of the eight victims were Asian women.
This senseless act of violence comes at a time when incidents of bias and hate crimes against the Asian, Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community in our country have reached alarming levels. According to the Center for Study of Hate and Extremism, AAPI hate crimes and targeting have increased by 150 percent in the past year across the U.S. and by 100 percent in Boston. On our own campuses here at Tufts, we have seen an increase in AAPI bias incidents over the past year.
I urge all members of the Tufts community to join me in unequivocally denouncing these crimes and expressing support for the AAPI community. I have asked our Chief Diversity Officers Joyce Sackey and Rob Mack to develop further programming to engage our community, increase awareness, and help us confront this hate together. More details on this programming will be available soon.
Beyond our campus, our mission as a university calls upon all of us to do our part in rooting out hatred in every corner. Whether we are students, faculty, or staff, we all have our part to play, on campus and off, whether we are at work or school, or in our own communities. All of us at Tufts can actively participate in confronting bigotry regardless of where we might encounter it. Together, we can be purposeful in joining humanity’s long struggle against the forces of racism and injustice.