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Council on Anti-Discrimination, COVID-19

A Statement From the Tacoma City Council on Anti-Discrimination and COVID-19


April 3, 2020



Tanisha Jumper, Media and Communications, tjumper@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-5152
Maria Lee, Media and Communications, maria.lee@cityoftacoma.org, (253) 591-2054


A Statement From the Tacoma City Council on Anti-Discrimination and COVID-19


We recognize these are challenging times for everyone in Tacoma and our nation. Respect for individuals of all races, ethnicities and national origins is an integral part of our cultural fabric as a city and as a community. 

The City of Tacoma’s Office of Equity and Human Rights has recently received information about discriminatory acts on valuable residents in our own Tacoma community. Asian Americans and other marginalized groups are experiencing increased instances of overt racism, including verbal and physical assaults in our region and throughout the country.

Facts, not fear, should drive our decisions and actions. 

Misinformation about coronavirus propagates fear and hostility that hurts people and makes it harder to keep everyone healthy. It is important to remember that coronavirus does not recognize race, nationality, or ethnicity.

The virus doesn’t discriminate, and neither will we. 

As we navigate through these trying times, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reminds us that individuals – including those of Asian descent – who do not live in, or have not recently been in, an area of ongoing spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, or have not been in contact with another individual who is a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 are NOT at greater risk of spreading COVID-19 than other Americans.

A report prepared for the U.S. based organizations, Chinese for Affirmative Action and the Asian Pacific Policy & Planning Council, stated that nationally, 673 instances of coronavirus discrimination were reported from March 19-25, 2020. Emerging trends include approximately 100 reports daily, with 5.5 percent from limited English speakers and verbal harassment making up two-thirds of reports. 

The Office of the Mayor and the Tacoma City Council condemn discrimination of any kind against members of our community. We are stronger as a community when we stand together against discrimination. Our city’s diversity is our greatest strength and we will not tolerate discrimination against our residents. 

To file a report of discrimination, please file either at the state’s Human Rights Commission or with the City’s Office of Equity and Human Rights by calling (253) 591-5045.