Several rallies are set to take place in Metro Vancouver on Monday to mark the National Day of Action Against Anti-Asian Racism.
The Stand With Asians Coalition has organized a number of events, which will involve groups of five standing physically distanced from one another, to highlight growing concerns about a rise in anti-Asian racism.
The socially distanced rallies are scheduled for 3 p.m. at the following locations:
- Brentwood (Lougheed and Willingdon)
- Lougheed (North Road and Austin)
- Metrotown Skytrain station
- Coquitlam Centre SkyTrain station
- District of Hope Municipality
- 32520 Lougheed Hwy.
- Inlet Skytrain station
- Brighouse SkyTrain station
- Surrey Central station
- Commercial-Broadway station
- Joyce Station
- Burrard Station
- Broadway-City Hall station (5:30 pm)
- New Westminster/Hyack Square
For those choosing not to attend in person, a national e-rally will take place online at 5 p.m. PT.
Police have noted a rise in anti-Asian racism amid the COVID-19 pandemic. Last year, Vancouver police reported a 717 per cent increase in hate crimes against East Asians from 2019 to 2020.
A federally funded study conducted by several groups under the umbrella of the Chinese Canadian National Council for Social Justice found that B.C. has the most reported incidents per capita of any sub-national region in North America.
In a statement issued Monday, Rachna Singh, parliamentary secretary for anti-racism initiatives, said the province has declared May 23 to 29 as Anti-Racism Awareness Week.
Last month, the province announced plans to develop a hotline where people can report incidents of racism.
The multilingual hotline, which will not be delivered by police, will allow British Columbians to report racist incidents and receive support and referrals. It does not aim to replace emergency response services in situations where someone could be in danger, the province said.
— With files from Sophie Lui