SAG-AFTRA has released a public service announcement featuring performers, broadcast journalists and social media influencers calling on all Americans to fight discrimination against Asian Americans occurring during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The video was inspired by a spike in hate crimes against Asian Americans during the pandemic. Sixteen SAG-AFTRA members appear in the PSA, including Jon Jon Briones, Christina Chang, Juju Chang, Joel De La Fuente, Amy Hill, James Hong, Carrie Ann Inaba, Ken Jeong, Clyde Kusatsu, Jodi Long, Lucy Liu, Tzi Ma, Jeannie Mai, Vincent Rodriguez III, Iqbal Theba and Hudson Yang.
“As a global community, we are experiencing a historically difficult time due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Unfortunately, instead of working together to get through this crisis, a few misguided people are looking for a scapegoat,” SAG-AFTRA President Gabrielle Carteris said. “We are still seeing a shocking increase in hate crimes against Asian Americans, including shunning, racial profiling, verbal harassment and even physical assault. This is a time of high stress, but that is no excuse for discriminatory behavior. We are all Americans and we are all in this together.”
The video premiered on July 21 during the union’s “Race & Storytelling: Asian American Voices” livestreamed panel discussion. The event explored ways in which better representation in the media and more in-depth portrayals of Asian American Pacific Islander characters can counter stereotypes and result in larger societal impact.
“SAG-AFTRA is paying attention to those brave Asian American voices coming forward with their heart-wrenching experiences of harassment,” said Ren Hanami, chair of the SAG-AFTRA National Asian Pacific American Media Committee. “We are listening to our members who have a stake in shaping a better world, free of discrimination and harassment, and we applaud Asian American activists, organizations and allies who are bringing attention to this issue. SAG-AFTRA stands with you.”
To view the PSA, visit youtube.com/watch?v=Hnkl7Ax1m2c&feature=youtu.be. For information, visit sagaftra.org.