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Navy Pier is the People’s Pier—a welcoming place for all. Creating a safe and inclusive environment and fostering a culture of diversity, equity and representation is not only central to our mission, but it is part of our ongoing commitment as an important civic institution that represents the diverse city of Chicago. As such, we must call out and stand firm against racism of any kind.
In light of recent events, Navy Pier extends its support to and stands in solidarity with the Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) community. We hold space for the victims of Tuesday night’s racist and violent hate crime, their loved ones and the many others who have been impacted by the persisting and increasing racial discrimination against AAPIs.
As recent reports have shown, anti-AAPI hate crimes increased by nearly 150% in 2020 and continue to rise as dangerous and racist rhetoric related to the pandemic—such as referring to the coronavirus as the “China virus” or “Kung Flu”—remains a common contributor to fostering ongoing hate. However, racism against AAPIs has a long and painful history in the U.S., manifesting in poor immigration laws, xenophobia, sexism, sexual violence and more. As we observe Women’s History Month, we cannot ignore the fact that anti-AAPI hate and violence is disproportionately impacting women, with nearly 70 percent of reported incidents showing AAPI women bearing the brunt of the harassment and violence.
We must all work to put an end to this and discrimination of any kind. And we must start by recognizing this moment for what it is and educating ourselves to understand and do better. Here are some resources that may aid in our collective mission to serve as allies to the AAPI community.
In addition, Navy Pier will be making a contribution to the Chinese American Service League (CASL), which offers comprehensive programs to connect families and individuals in the Chicago Chinese community and beyond with the vital support they need. We also encourage donations (from those who are able) to AAPI-serving organizations currently working to help the community navigate these hypersensitive times.
The work to create a more safe, inclusive and equitable space for all must and will continue. At Navy Pier, we look forward to doing our part in continuing to elevate AAPI voices within our community and spotlight their work through year-round arts and cultural programming at the Pier, which remains free and accessible to all.
To the AAPI community at Navy Pier, across Chicagoland and around the globe, we continue to stand with you, today and always. We invite the rest of the Navy Pier community to join us. Let’s embrace kindness and compassion.