SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) – On Tuesday, the San Francisco Police Department released the number of bias-motivated crimes against the AAPI community at a press conference in Chinatown.
Mayor London Breed said it is going to take more investments in public safety to reduce the number of crimes against Asian American residents.
“The attacks against our community must be stopped,” Anni Chung, with the Shelter for the Elderly, said.
“We have to take responsibility for preventing the hate and the anti-Asian violence,” Dean Ito Taylor, with the AAPI Council, said.
As the Chinese American community in San Francisco prepares to celebrate the Lunar New Year of the tiger, the number of hate crimes against AAPI community members is top of mind for Police Chief Bill Scott who says there was a six-fold increase over the past two-years
“We had eight in 2019. We had nine in 2020. We had 60 in 2021. That is significant. That is concerning. That is alarming,” Police Chief Bill Scott said.
In fact, Asian Americans recorded the most significant growth in hate crime incidents over that period, according to preliminary statistical data released by the San Francisco Police Department.
“More than 30 of the 60 incidents were committed by the same offender. An individual we arrested last August,” Chief Scott said.
Many of those targeted for attacks and robberies are members of the AAPI Senior community.
“We’re out in the community. I go to banks and the tellers tell me about the hostility from customers still blaming them for COVID. We go to restaurants where just to take out you have to go through a locked door because the restaurant workers are afraid to keep their restaurants open for fear of violence,” Taylor said.
“We have to make sure that people understand that we will not tolerate it,” Mayor London Breed said.
Mayor Breed says now that the data is available it is time to make some changes.
“It is time to change it with the number of non-profit agencies that help our seniors in this community, and it is time to change it with the number of investments that we must make in our police department, in our ambassadors’ programs and other things that will make sure in this year 2022, that those numbers decline,” Mayor Breed said.