Governor Hogan Announces Actions to Combat Anti-Asian Hate and Bias Crimes
ANNAPOLIS, MD (STL.News) Governor Larry Hogan today announced a series of statewide actions to combat the rise in anti-Asian hate and bias crimes, including enhanced safety and enforcement measures, more robust community resources, and steps to empower educators and students.
“The actions we are announcing here today are the beginning,” said Governor Hogan. “We will use every tool at our disposal to help provide additional protection to those who are impacted by these crimes. I want to sincerely thank all the members of the workgroup for agreeing to serve this important mission at such a critical time.
Governor Hogan was joined for today’s announcements by First Lady Yumi Hogan, former U.S. Attorney Robert K. Hur, chairman of the governor’s Asian American Hate Crimes Workgroup, and members of the workgroup. The governor announced the establishment of the workgroup in April in response to the rise in violence and discrimination targeting the Asian American community. Nearly one-third of Asian Americans have experienced discrimination in some form over the course of the pandemic.
“To make things better, to reduce ignorance and hate, we need concrete action informed by careful thought, analysis, and consideration of different perspectives,” said Chairman Hur. “I’m grateful to Governor Hogan and the First Lady for focusing attention on the important issues of bias and violence against members of the Asian American communities in our nation, and I’m thankful for the opportunity to be part of the solution.”
Building on the workgroup’s efforts, the governor is advancing immediate actions to support Asian American students, businesses, and families:
Public Safety and Enforcement
- Updating hate and bias training for law enforcement agencies to include reporting of hate and bias incidents and crimes.
- Designating a Maryland State Police commander to act as liaison for hate crimes and racially biased incidents, and launching a partnership between the Maryland Coordination and Analysis Center (MCAC) and the Governor’s Office of Community Initiatives (GOCI) to share data.
- Encouraging state and local law enforcement agencies to prioritize diversity in recruiting, and offering incentives for officers who are proficient in multiple languages.
- Providing $1 million in funding to provide devices with translation apps (i.e. Google Translate) for law enforcement and victims services organizations.
- Calling on the U.S. Department of Justice to expedite guidance for the implementation of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act.
- Increasing Protecting Against Hate Crimes funding from $3 million to $5 million—a 67% increase—and directing the Governor’s Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs to conduct aggressive outreach efforts regarding the availability of funding.
- Making 211 Maryland a resource for reporting hate and bias incidents and providing information about services and resources in Asian languages.
- Launching an online resource center, and publishing a guide for How To Report Hate Crimes & Incidents available in Asian languages.
- Developing alternative reporting channels, including community organizations, nonprofits, and faith centers.
Educators and Students
- Directing the Maryland Center for School Safety to develop resources for educators, parents, and students on how to identify and report hate and bias incidents.
- Engaging with the Maryland State Department of Education on developing a Continuing Professional Development offering on Asian American history for teachers.
- Working with the University System of Maryland to explore scholarships and fellowships through the Merrill College of Journalism to encourage more Asian-American participation in journalism.
- Provide education resources online for educators and members of the public.