You are reading

COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act Moves One Step Closer to Becoming Law: Meng

Grace Meng speaking at a #StopAAPIHate rally! earlier this month (Photo: twitter)

April 16, 2021 By Ryan Songalia

A bill sponsored by Congresswoman Grace Meng that aims to combat hate crimes that target the Asian-American community moved one step closer to becoming law Wednesday.

The Senate voted overwhelmingly in favor of advancing the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, which would simplify the reporting and review process pertaining to racially motivated crimes.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said the bill, sponsored by Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii in the senate, would soon go before the full senate floor for a vote.

The bill was first introduced in the House of Representatives by Meng in May 2020, and gained traction in March, following the mass killing of eight people, including six Asian women, in Georgia.

President Joe Biden called on Congress, following the deadly attack, to “swiftly pass the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act.”

The bill would require the Department of Justice to expedite the review process following potential hate crimes related to the pandemic, and issue guidance to law enforcement agencies on how to improve hate crime reporting.

The legislation also calls for guidelines on how federal agencies can avoid racially discriminatory language in describing the pandemic.

There has been a significant jump in the number of anti-Asian attacks in the past year–primarily tied to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. There were 28 hate crimes against Asian Americans in New York last year, compared to just three in 2019, according to the NYPD.

“There have been assaults all across the nation, including in my home district of Queens, New York,” Rep. Meng said at a press conference on Tuesday.

The press conference was attended by Schumer and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, along with Sen. Hirono and Rep. Andy Kim of New Jersey, both of whom are of Asian descent.

For Meng, the wave of anti-Asian hate has been personal.

In October, she shared anti-Asian voicemail messages she receive, shortly after her ceremonial resolution condemning the racist attacks passed the House of Representatives. Many of the messages contained the words “Chinese virus” and “Kung Flu,” echoing references made by former President Donald Trump.

“You all know that for more than a year the Asian American community has been fighting two viruses – the Covid-19 pandemic and anti-Asian hate,” said Meng said.

email the author: news@queenspost.com
No comments yet

Leave a Comment
Reply to this Comment

All comments are subject to moderation before being posted.


The reCAPTCHA verification period has expired. Please reload the page.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Recent News

Mob of young people ransack Flushing boutique minutes after robbing man at knifepoint on Roosevelt Avenue: NYPD

Police from the 109th Precinct in Flushing are still looking for more than a dozen young people who allegedly robbed a man at knifepoint on Roosevelt Avenue and then pulled a smash-and-grab minutes later, looting a store of tens of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise last month.

The mob of more than a dozen men and women surrounded a 38-year-old man in the vicinity of Roosevelt Avenue and Union Street in the early morning of Monday, April 22. Several of the suspects threatened the victim with knives and some of the individuals menaced him with sticks before they forcibly removed his wallet, which contained $700 in cash, police said, adding that the victim was not injured during the incident.

South Richmond Hill man busted for allegedly groping woman on board bus near Forest Park: NYPD

A South Richmond Hill man was arrested on Monday and booked at the 102nd Precinct in Richmond Hill for groping a woman on a bus near the eastern edge of Forest Park earlier this month.

Edwin Guzman, 38, of 112th Street, is accused of approaching a 26-year-old victim who was on board an MTA Q37 bus near the intersection of Park Lane South and Metropolitan Avenue on the morning of Wednesday, May 1.

Mayor announces new 9/11 memorial will be built in Whitestone to honor fallen service members from Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts

Queens will be home to the city’s new memorial dedicated to the 99 service members from the borough who lost their lives in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq following the events of 9/11, Mayor Eric Adams announced during a Fleet Week kickoff reception at City Hall on Thursday morning.

The borough of Queens was chosen because it is home to the largest number of post-9/11 service members who were killed in action during those conflicts. Queens is also home to the highest population of living veterans than any other borough.

Two men sentenced to life imprisonment in murder-for-hire of perceived business rival at Flushing karaoke club

The president of a Manhattan-based construction company and a California man were sentenced to life in prison in Brooklyn federal court on Wednesday for orchestrating the murder of a businessman at a Flushing karaoke bar in 2019.

Qing Ming “Allen” Yu, 55, of Oyster Bay, and Zhe “Zack” Zhang, 35, of Arcadia, Calif., were convicted by a federal jury in October following a two-week trial for the contract killing of 31-year-old Xin “Chris” Gu, who worked at Yu’s company before becoming his business rival. The jury found the defendants guilty of murder-for-hire and murder-for-hire conspiracy for hiring a hitman to gun the victim down outside the Grand Slam KTV bar on Fowler Avenue