First national help service set up for east and south-east Asian victims of hate

A free 24-hour national helpline has been launched in the UK to help East and South East Asian victims of racism and other forms of hate.

Callers to the On Your Side service can speak to a specialist adviser, with long-term support available. They can also use the helpline to report incidents of racial abuse or attacks targeting other aspects of their identity.

Operators speak a variety of languages ​​including Japanese, Indonesian, Tagalog (widely spoken in the Philippines) and several Chinese dialects.

The service will run seven days a week and has been set up by a consortium of 15 representative groups to tackle the rise in hate crimes against East and South East Asians living in the UK since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. In response to

The number of police-recorded hate crimes against East and South-East Asian people rose by 48.3 per cent between 2018 and 2020 – although the actual figure is likely to be higher as police say race is not always noted. used to go

A spokeswoman for Protection Approaches, the charity that leads the consortium, said the poll of more than 150 East and South-East Asians found two in five victims of hate crime, although less than half reported abuse. .

Camille Jolly, director of East and South East Asian Scotland, an affiliated group, said: “People from East and South East Asian communities have experienced a huge increase in racially motivated attacks, both verbally and physically. , no contribution has been made to them in terms of language, cultural awareness and being able to accurately record their race.

“I know the effects of this first hand. I have been tortured, harassed and verbally abused. During the pandemic, I was asked to leave a shop when other people were not.

“I had sanitizer sprayed on me on a bus. And I’m not alone in experiencing such incidents. Some people still consider racial jokes aimed at members of the East and Southeast Asian community to actually be a form of racism. Do not understand form.

On Your Side was launched on 9 August and can be accessed on 0808 801 0393 or online here. This service is funded by the Hong Kong BN(O) Welcome Program of the Government.

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