The Pilipino Association of Workers and Immigrants (PAWIS) condemns in the strongest possible terms the ongoing anti-Asian violence and crimes sweeping across the United States.
Most of our members are essential workers who continue going to work despite and inspite, of COVID 19. They risk their lives everyday so that they can continue to send money back home to their families in the Philippines. However, the anti-Asian sentiment that has long plagued this nation and has escalated to violence and attacks against Asians in these past weeks sowed added fears and worries to our community that has been through so much already in the past year. Filipinos and our Asian brothers and sisters are subjected to horrific physical attacks, racial slurs and other forms of harassment.
Violence is not new to Filipino immigrants. Structural violence caused many Filipinos to migrate and/or work abroad. Currently, our home country is under the grip of a fascist dictator drunk on killing suspected drug peddlers and human rights defenders. It is disheartening that in our adopted country we continue to experience violence — violence , bias and prejudice rooted in systematic racism that continues to operate in this nation and in all its institutions.
We urge our community to stand strong and in solidarity with our Asian sisters and brothers. We denounce the type of scapegoating that we Asians and Asian Americans have been subjected to in the wake of the pandemic. We deserve to live, breathe and work in this country. We must continue to advocate and fight for our rights and welfare because every person in this world deserves to live their lives with safety, dignity and respect.