Los Angeles, CA - On May 20, 2021, the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act was signed into passage by President Joe Biden with an overwhelming bipartisan vote from the House (364-62) and Senate (94-1). Sponsored by Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Representative Grace Meng (D-NY), the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act is not only an important step to protect Asian Americans but all who face hate and violence in our country. The Korean American Coalition (KAC) celebrates the passage of this act as a major milestone in our history to address anti-Asian hate rhetoric and violence.
The bill is designed to improve hate crime reporting in several ways. First, it requires the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to designate a point person to expedite review of potential hate crimes. Next, it requires the DOJ to develop, and distribute guidance about handling hate crimes to state, local and Tribal law enforcement agencies. Third, it authorizes DOJ to provide local governments with grants to improve hate crime-related training.
In response to the passage of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act, KAC will continue to serve and empower the Asian American community and stand in allyship with all communities vulnerable to hate crimes and hate incidents.
Watch the signing of the COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act here.
Read the full legislation here.