Ad Council's newest campaign is here to address and combat the heightened racism and harassment the Asian and Pacific Islander community is facing as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. While the virulence of anti-Asian racism is often overlooked, Asian-Americans have experienced increased xenophobia during this time, in addition to increased concern for contracting COVID-19. Over 2,000 hate crimes against Asian-Americans related to COVID-19 were reported across the U.S. just between March and June, made worse by Donald Trump's repeated uses of racial slurs like "kung flu" and the "Chinese virus" in reference to COVID-19. Ad Council's "Love Has No Labels" campaign recently partnered with Master of None co-creator Alan Yang to create a powerful PSA to bring awareness to the hate Asian-Americans have experienced in recent months due to COVID-19 fears.
"My biggest fear is that all the stereotypes that we've worked so hard to break are just going to be reversed."
The moving video features Asian and Pacific Islanders of various backgrounds sharing their personal stories on the frequent harassment they've experienced during the pandemic, and urging people to have conversations to "fight the virus" and "fight the bias" against the community. They reveal that they've been accused of "bringing the virus over" and have had strangers cough and spit at them, simply for being of Asian descent. "My biggest fear is that all the stereotypes that we've worked so hard to break are just going to be reversed," said Melissa King, a Chinese-American chef and winner of Top Chef, in the video. "It's really hard to talk about racism when all I want to do is cry about it," an artist also said, as the individuals stressed the importance of addressing the discrimination at hand.
The one-minute PSA also guides viewers to additional resources to better understand anti-Asian racism, as well as ways to take action to advocate for the Asian and Pacific Islander community, including supporting small Asian-owned businesses and standing up against hate crimes. Watch the powerful video above.