Editor’s note: Last year, at NPI’s 2020 Spring Fundraising Gala, we were honored to have Toshiko Grace Hasegawa as one of our featured speakers. Toshiko’s reflections on standing strong against hate during tremendously difficult times are just as worth watching and hearing today as they were almost one year ago when she recorded them, especially given this week’s horrific murder spree targeting Asian Americans in Atlanta, Georgia. These are moments when we must do all we can to unite our country behind the progressive values we hold dear.
Meet Toshiko Hasegawa
Toshiko Grace Hasegawa, M.A. is the Executive Director of the Washington State Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs.
Toshiko is a life long resident of Seattle, Washington. She currently resides and was raised in Beacon Hill as a fourth generation Japanese American. She went on to attend Garfield High School in the historic Seattle Central District.
She has a Master of Arts in Criminal Justice from Seattle University. Toshiko also received a bachelor of Arts in Criminology and Spanish Language and Literature as an undergraduate student at Seattle University.
She has earned certificates in effective business writing, grant writing for non profits and protecting human research participants.
This week, Toshiko announced her candidacy for Seattle Port Commission, a countywide office. She will be seeking the seat currently held by Peter Steinbrueck. You can learn more about her priorities on her campaign website.
Watch Toshiko’s remarks at NPI’s 2020 Spring Gala
Originally recorded in April of 2020
- Hate Crimes Against Asian Americans Are on the Rise. Many Say More Policing Isn’t the Answer (Time Magazine)
- Anger And Fear As Asian American Seniors Targeted In Bay Area Attacks (NPR)
- Yellow Peril: 19th-Century Scapegoating (AAWW)
- Why it’s time to retire the term ‘Asian Pacific Islander’ (Seattle Times)
- Fifty Years Later, Former UC Berkeley Students Celebrate the Asian-American Movement They Began (KQED)
- The Return of “Yellow Peril”: Anti-AAPI Rhetoric and Policies Leading up to the 2020 Election (Stop AAPI Hate)
- Model Minority Myth Again Used As A Racial Wedge Between Asians And Blacks (NPR)
Take action: Stop racism against Asian Americans
These nonprofits offer forms for reporting instances of racism and hate crimes:
- Asian Americans Advancing Justice
- Asian Pacific American Advocates
- Asian Pacific Planning and Policy Council (A3PCON) — a joint endeavor with the Chinese for Affirmative Action (CAA) and the Asian American Studies Department of San Francisco State University
Support this collection of fundraisers if you’d like to put your money to work to stop Asian hate and help victims of the murders in Atlanta.
Need a backgrounder on hate crimes? This guide, published in 2006, is a good starting point for people unfamiliar with this difficult topic.
Download OCA’s COVID-19 toolkit to learn how to avoid even unintentionally perpetuating and reinforcing harmful stereotypes and false narratives.OCA’s COVID-19 Toolkit
API Chaya empowers survivors of gender-based violence and human trafficking to gain safety, connection, and wellness. We build power by educating and mobilizing South Asian, Asian, Pacific Islander, and all immigrant communities to end exploitation, creating a world where all people can heal and thrive.
(State Senator and Northwest Progressive Foundation boardmember Manka Dhingra co-founded Chaya, which is now API Chaya, several years ago.)
There’s also the Asian Pacific Islander Community Leadership Foundation:
ACLF is a community-based, nonprofit organization that trains and supports the leadership of Asian Pacific Islanders (API) with a commitment to social justice, community empowerment and public service. ACLF’s purpose is to provide an environment which fosters the development of individual leadership, community strength, and inter-community unity to promote issues critical to API’s.
And you can follow the Asian Pacific Islander Coalition (APIC) on Facebook.
The most important thing you can do is confront racism whenever you’re in a position to. For example, if you hear someone at your workplace, school, or faith community make a racist comment, don’t let it slide. Report it and call it out. And if you’re willing and able, help that individual start their antiracism journey. AAJC offers bystander intervention trainings — you can sign up for one here.