STATEMENTS

08/16/22 Building Hate Crime Response Capacity in Community-Based Organizations University of Houston in Collaboration with Houston Coalition Against Hate

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 16, 2022

Building Hate Crime Response Capacity in Community-Based Organizations
University of Houston in Collaboration with Houston Coalition Against Hate

HOUSTON, Aug. 16, 2022 – Hate crime data from the FBI is alarming. Since 2020, hate crimes have surged and continue their rancid ascent. As they continue to permeate the fabric of society, the University of Houston has been called upon by the Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) to guide community-based organizations, which are on the front lines in leading communities through crisis, to come together to form a consolidated response to hate. HCAH is a network of community-based organizations, institutions and leaders who have united to reduce hate and encourage belonging.

“What I would like to see in the city of Houston, and it can begin with community-based organizations, is a collective response that demonstrates our intolerance of hate is more powerful than the intimidation that a perpetrator of a hate crime would try to propagate against an entire community,” said Aabha Brown, clinical associate professor at the UH Graduate College of Social Work, whose academic review and recommendations are published in a specially commissioned Houston Coalition Against Hate report “Building Hate Crime Response Capacity in Community Based Organizations.” Her team of researchers included colleagues at the UH Graduate College of Social Work, Juan Barthelemy, assistant professor and Donna Amtsberg, clinical assistant professor.

The coalition approached Brown and team to assess the response capacity of community-based organizations to hate crime. They had already published “Hate in Houston: A Study of Hate Crimes and Hate Incidents in the City of Houston,” and those findings emboldened them to continue.

“We found that gaps in hate crime reporting make it difficult to accurately track the instances of hate-based violence in Houston and around the country,” said Marjorie Joseph, executive director of the Houston Coalition Against Hate. “Submission of data to the FBI is voluntary and many local law enforcement agencies elect not to participate.”

Taking aim at the heart of the reporting weakness came this: “Many cities in Harris County reported zero hate crimes over the 11–year period (2008–2018). This pattern of reporting does not align with findings from the National Crime Victimization Survey, which show that hate crimes are largely undercounted, thus suggesting that non-reporting of hate crimes does not automatically mean that hate crimes do not exist.”

Hate crimes exist, en masse

In 2020, the FBI reported 7,759 hate crime incidents in the United States, a 6% increase from 7,314 in 2019 and the most since 2008, when 7,783 hate crime incidents were reported. Reported hate crimes targeting Black people rose to 2,755 from 1,930 the prior year, a 43% increase. The number of anti-Asian hate crimes rose from 158 to 274. Reported hate crimes targeting the Jewish community made up nearly 60% of all religion-based hate crimes.

Hate crimes are motivated, in whole or in part, by the offender’s bias against a race, gender, gender identity, religion, disability, sexual orientation or ethnicity, and are committed against people, property or society. Because motivation is subjective, it is sometimes difficult to know with certainty whether a crime resulted from the offender’s bias.

Brown and her research team found that the most powerful responses to hate crimes involve coordination and cooperation among community-based organizations.

“The nature of a hate crime is that one person may be targeted, but the idea behind a hate crime is to intimidate every single person who identifies with or cares for that particular group,” Brown said. “If organizations could work together as a collective and share the burden of responding, it would ease the burden on individual organizations, alleviating some of the concerns that organizations individually have with regard to impacts on funding or key stakeholder relationships.”

Brown’s report suggests the following steps necessary for community-based organizations to respond to hate-based incidents more effectively:

  • Define hate crime
  • Establish a response protocol
  • Train often and train everyone
  • Provide vicarious trauma support
  • Establish working relationships with law enforcement
  • Assess response assets (physical spaces, skills, relationships and resources specific to the community-based organization)
  • Create a response ecosystem

With these protocols being built, creating mechanisms for how organizations can deal with hate crimes, Joseph is hopeful.

“Assessing the landscape was the first step. Now that we have the findings, we can be proactive in doing what we can to keep our city safe and ensure we foster communities where everyone belongs. It’s reassuring to know ultimately, we all want the same thing – safety and acceptance,” she said.

06/30/22 Roe v Wade : Get Loud

As America looks toward Independence Day, it cannot be lost we are amidst the broad daylight of environmental devastation, rampant hate and xenophobia, stark racism, ageism, sexism, a Supreme Court of The United States (SCOTUS) that has overturned the precedence established in Roe v. Wade and that has jeopardized the safety of all with its interpretation on the right to bear arms. The delineation between church and state has officially been marred, as we find SCOTUS in deep overstep and breach of our Constitution’s promise. It is crucial we do not turn our gaze from this blazing sun. We must discern and acquiesce. The annihilation of individual bodily autonomy is a human rights violation and should not be accepted nor tolerated. It is white supremacy, patriarchy, and sexism ferociously reaching back into the obscureness of times past refusing to release its stronghold on our culture. Absolutely NOT.

This year the United States is again attempting to make Daylight Savings Time permanent, ending the annual ritual of turning our clocks back every fall. May this be an energetic and metaphorical symbolism that we too will not stand for turning back the hands of time. In this current environmental climate, it is dangerous to stare directly at the sun. Whether through conscious agreement or unconscious/conscious complicity – we contrived that sun. Now we must turn toward it, and face it.

There are many variables for consideration when determining the age of a country. It is most evident America is nowhere near elder status, and has only moved from infancy to adolescence. Perhaps nationally we are currently at the brink of transitioning from youth to young adult. As this youthful, rebellious nation cries out in resistance to the inevitable shifts of justice and belonging already in motion, so do America’s teenage sons every time an AR-15 is discharged in a religious or educational institution or supermarket. The very places we nourish body, mind, and soul are under attack because our bodies, minds, and souls have long been under siege since this country’s inception. Cultural shift, transformation, and reparation summon us. The longer we avoid the truth, resist, and refuse to succumb and surrender, the more our journey will be one of great loss and deep suffering. If you can even begin to imagine any greater loss than the lives already sacrificed in service to the lax policy and laws of this nation and political division we currently face.

This isn’t about sides. This is not left or right or a matter of political affiliation. This is about our inalienable human and civil rights. These are not the times of inertia and reticence. They are times of unearthing and revelation – beckoning for courageous dissent, creative vision, and justice. May we not mistake silence and avoidance as the mechanisms through which we witness the emergence of peace. May neutrality not render us impotent in the absence of justice. May we cease looking for shade and cover from our sun/sons under the umbrella of another. Together we must BE LOUD – raising and lifting our collective voices.

We will never know the words from the undelivered sermon of the late great Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King Jr. entitled, “Why America May Go To Hell.” One can only wonder if he was perhaps forewarning of these times we find ourselves in just 54 years following his assassination. Or, do we still have time to circumvent such a painstakingly raw prediction. Whichever of the two it is, may we refuse stagnation, silence, and complicity. May it be NO MORE. May we dismiss paralysis for moving like wind and water in flow, sync, and agitation. Always finding a way. Our way away from doing nothing when something needs to be done. Steadfast on Polaris – claiming justice for all.

Houston Coalition Against Hate affirms the humanity and belonging of all people. We stand committed to disrupting systems that perpetuate harm, intentionally exploit, exclude, and oppress any peoples or communities. We believe all forms of reproductive health care, including access to safe and legal abortion, are indispensable to our agency, freedom, equality, self-determination, and dignity regardless of gender, gender identity/expression, and sexual orientation.

Onward in solidarity,

Marjorie Joseph
Executive Director

 

Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) is a network of community-based organizations, institutions, and leaders who come together to reduce hate and encourage belonging.
09/23/21 Call to Biden Administration to immediately have CBP cease and desist in the mistreatment of Haitian Migrants

Read full letter here.

Haitian Creole translation available here.  Translation services from English to Haitian Creole provided by Fedo Boyer of CREOLETRANS

04/01/21 HCAH Member Statement Against AAPI Hate

April 1, 2021

Houston Coalition Against Hate stands in solidarity with our AAPI communities in denouncing hate crimes and incidents that have risen here and across our nation since the emergence of COVID-19. We send our prayers and support to the grieving families in Atlanta and the Kim and Lee family recently victimized at their place of business in Houston.

We recognize these incidents are not isolated. These are part of a much longer history of anti-Asian racism as reflected by the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882, the forced internment of Japanese Americans during World War II, and violence against South Asians and Muslims post-9/11. Hate in any form is unacceptable and should not be tolerated. We must not remain silent. Everyone deserves to be safe and protected. No one should have to live in fear for their personal safety because their heritage or skin color is branded by historical racist narrative and oppression.

We call upon everyone in Greater Houston to courageously stand with HCAH against all hate, bias, violence, and discrimination in our community and across the United States. We seek to provide community connection and resources for civic leaders and agencies to educate themselves about race/ethnic bias and discrimination so that together we can support, implement, and reinforce preventative measures for our own community. We are grateful to Houston Endowment for joining us in condemning this wave of hate. Click here to read Houston Endowment’s statement.

Our hearts go out to the victims and their loved ones who suffer or live in fear due to xenophobic rhetoric surrounding Asians and Asian Americans. We are confident our city will continue to provide just, equitable, and compassionate leadership, and trust-based collaborations to keep all residents and visitors safe.

Learn more:
● Develop skills to speak up against hate and bigotry by participating in one of our free Bystander Intervention Trainings. Register at:
www.houstonagainsthate.org/BIT.
● For tools and resources on anti-bullying and hate crimes information, please visit www.ocanational.org.
● For information on how to best #SupportChinatown in these times, please visit www.ocahouston.org.
● For more information on Houston Coalition Against Hate, please visit www.houstonagainsthate.org.

Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) is a network of community-based organizations, institutions, and leaders who come together to reduce hate and encourage belonging.

Report hate:
● If you experience a hate crime, please call 9-1-1 or your local law enforcement agency. If you are in Houston and are submitting a delayed report, you may call the HPD non-emergency number at 713-884-3131.
● If you experience a hate incident, please report it online at www.aapihatecrimes.org.

In solidarity,

Marjorie Joseph
Executive Director
Houston Coalition Against Hate

Co-signed by the following Houston Coalition Against Hate members:

Alliance for Justice
Arts Connect Houston
Black Lives Matter: Houston
Brave Little Company
CAIR-Houston
Center for African American Military History
Center for the Healing of Racism
Chinese Community Center
Coalition of Community Organizations
Contemporary Arts Museum Houston
Daya Inc
DiverseWorks
Emgage
Fifth Ward Community Redevelopment Corporation
Girls Inc. of Greater Houston
Hindus of Greater Houston
Holocaust Museum Houston
Houston Immigration Legal Services Collaborative
Houston in Action
Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston
Latinx Artist Society in Opera Lovescaping
Mi Familia Vota
OCA-Greater Houston
Partnership for the Advancement and Immersion of Refugees (PAIR)
Rothko Chapel
Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom
The Alliance
The Jung Center
The Multi Cultural Center ( MCC)
United Against Human Trafficking
YMCA of Greater Houston

Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) is a network of community-based organizations, institutions, and leaders who come together to reduce hate and encourage belonging.
01/13/21 Statement on Insurrection at the US Capitol

January 13, 2021

TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, ON BEHALF OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE, AND THE WORLD:

The United States was founded on the paradoxical pillars of freedom and slavery.

On Wednesday, January 6, 2021, after months of delegitimizing the fair and free elections in the USA, President Donald J. Trump and his collaborators and supporters incited hordes of people, including white nationalists, racists, and anti-Semites, to violently and disrespectfully storm the US Capitol. Just when we thought the veil was lifted high, it was pulled back to further reveal the magnitude of this paradox.

The knowledge of these treacherous acts and their accompanying horrific imagery weigh heavily in our collective consciousness. We invite you to stop saying what was witnessed on January 6th is “un-American and not who we are,” and instead, to surrender to the reality that our nation was built on hate and white supremacy. Only through the acknowledgement and acceptance of these truths can we find a way to move forward as a united nation. May this moment in time be a reckoning for us all.

Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) opposes the perpetration and instigation of hate, bias, violence, and discrimination by any person or entity in Texas, the United States, or across the world.

Consequently, HCAH supports:

1. Congress in their efforts to impeach the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

2. Full investigation of the President, Congress, state or local political representatives, and other perpetrators present or complicit January 6th who were in support of crimes such as treason, sedition, murder/attempted murder, and inciting an attempted coup.

3. Full investigation of the perpetrators who destroyed the John Lewis Memorial placard and desecrated any local houses of worship under appropriate federal or state hate crimes statutes.

4. The de-glorification of the Confederacy at the state and federal level, including removing all Confederate statues and memorials from public display on local, state, and federal property. We urge Texas to move swiftly to remove such monuments on public land and to pass State Rep. Jarvis Johnson’s bill to end Confederate Heroes Day as a state holiday (HB 36).

5. The thorough review, audit, investigation, and public reporting on the protocols of the Metropolitan Police of the District of Columbia (MPDC), the Capitol Police, the US National Guard, FBI, and any other law enforcement agency in relation to the January 6th insurrection.

6. The promulgation of policies by the Executive Branch, including the Department of Justice and Department of Education and their civil rights divisions, that support robust civil rights initiatives and investigations.

7. Ongoing efforts, through research, the arts, and education, to cultivate dialogue, understanding, and community-based healing regarding challenging, traumatic, and divisive issues and episodes in Texas and U.S. history and politics.

As the Texas Legislature has convened, we offer a prayer for safety for all members and staff. We recognize collective efforts are the way forward through this challenging time.

Texas has an opportunity to lead in civil rights and usher the way forward to a more just and equitable nation. HCAH offers its services as a resource on any of the issues discussed herein.

In solidarity,

Marjorie Joseph, Executive Director

Justine Fanarof, Esq.,  Board President

Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) is a 509(a)3 Supporting Organization with Greater Houston Community Foundation. HCAH is a network of community-based organizations, institutions, and leaders who come together to reduce hate and encourage belonging. For more information on our members, please go to: www.houstonagainsthate.org/community-members.

 

05/08/20 Statement regarding Ahmaud Arbery

May 08, 2020

Houston, TX – Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) released the following statement today regarding the death of Ahmaud Arbery.

I am not going to watch the video. Not going to watch THIS video. Can’t – watch the video.

Tired, of watching videos…

WE HAVE TO WATCH THE VIDEO/S.

For years it has remained under the radar. Thanks to social media platforms and phone camera technology now the veil that once protected our fragile souls from ‘viewing PTSD’ no longer exists. Now the public can be judge and jury where systems of justice have been used as tools of oppression and failed the people.

COVID-19 lifted the veil another inch higher with indiscriminate and inequitable amounts of African Americans succumbing to the pandemic. COVID-19 lifted the veil on the rise of xenophobia against Asians and Asian Americans. Veil pulled higher on hate toward Jews and Muslims. Lifted completely when you realize gun toting white Americans exercising their right to free speech and assemble, even while illegally defying stay at home orders during a pandemic, shouting and spitting into the faces of law enforcement and essential health care workers, doesn’t get anyone arrested, or let alone ticketed and fined. THEN, it becomes clear the privilege afforded…

DO NOT turn a silent eye. Do not blindly speak over the recent days’ happenings as if they never occurred. May the grief and sadness of these times penetrate your heart so fully you are moved… DO NOT stand there – still. SPEAK. Raise your voice. Do something. What ever you do, don’t watch the video. Unless, YOU can stand it… May we soon sick and tire of standing to watch the videos.

May justice be served in Georgia and may they add a hate crimes law to the books. May Travis and Gregory McMichael be convicted of the murder of #AhmaudArbery. May district attorneys George Barnhill and Jackie Johnson resign. May we never relinquish justice. Happy Birthday Ahmaud Arbery.

Marjorie Joseph Executive Director

Houston Coalition Against Hate

3/23/20 Joint Statement regarding anti-Asian and anti-Chinese sentiments and actions due to COVID-19

 

March 23, 2020

Houston, TX – OCA-Greater Houston and Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) release the following statement today regarding anti-Asian and anti-Chinese sentiments and actions due to COVID-19: 

Asian Americans have increasingly become the target of hate and bias in the form of public threats and harassment since the emergence of COVID-19 otherwise known as Coronavirus. Most recently, an entire family was violently attacked while shopping at a Sam’s Club in Midland, TX. In addition, an Asian student was physically assaulted by his high-school peers in California’s San Fernando Valley, further demonstrating the alarming escalation of anti-Asian bullying. 

OCA-GH and HCAH are calling on the City of Houston and its surrounding areas to say NO to all hate and bias crimes and incidents, especially those currently being directed at the Asian community as a result of COVID-19. We call upon all school districts, boards and superintendents, school administrators and staff, Parent Teacher Associations, organizations and institutions of higher learning, law enforcement and local businesses to take proactive measures to not only educate themselves on COVID- 19, but also implement and reinforce preventative measures against race/ethnic bias and discrimination. 

Hate in any form is unacceptable and should not be tolerated. The City of Houston has a moral and legal obligation to ensure the safety of its Asian American community from violence and harassment. 

Our hearts go out to the victims and their families, mentioned and unmentioned, who have suffered at the expense of today’s xenophobic rhetoric surrounding Asians and Asian Americans. We urge the City of Houston to provide just, equitable, and compassionate leadership, and we trust in the city and its residents to make this a safe place for all who live here. 

To report any incidents of harassment and bullying based on Coronavirus fears please go to www.aapihatecrimes.org

For tools and resources on anti-bullying and hate crimes information please go to www.ocanational.org.

For information on how to best #SupportChinatown in these times please go to www.ocahouston.org

For more information on Houston Coalition Against Hate please go to www.houstonagainsthate.org

FACEBOOK: @HCAHTX | TWITTER & INSTAGRAM: @HCAH_TX 

#HOUSTONAGAINSTHATE 

Thank you,

Debbie Chen, Programs Director

OCA-Greater Houston 

Marjorie Joseph, Executive Director

Houston Coalition Against Hate

8/16/17 HCAH Statement on White Nationalist Protests

The Houston Coalition Against Hate (HCAH) joins many other communities around the country in condemning the message of white supremacist groups this past weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia, and the violence that they engendered.

We join the many voices around the nation in denouncing the hatred we saw on display, recognizing that this tragedy is not an isolated incident, but rather the manifestation of centuries of systemic violence, racism, and anti-Semitism in this country. We send our condolences to the families of Heather Heyer, Jay Cullen and Berke M. M. Bates, and we hold in our hearts those who were injured while standing up to injustice.

What happened in Charlottesville can serve as a teachable moment for Houston’s residents and leaders. As residents of one of the most diverse cities in the nation, we are proud of our city and our country’s diversity. At times like these, we must speak up, call out, and stand united against cruelty, bigotry and hate. We know that Houston is stronger when all of our communities feel safe in the expression of their unique ethnic and cultural backgrounds and we are committed to ensuring that Houston is an inclusive and welcoming city.

The Houston Coalition Against Hate is a network of community-based organizations in Houston that have come together to collectively address incidents of bias, hate, discrimination and violence against Houstonians because of their religion, race/ethnicity, gender, disability, age, sexual orientation, gender identity/expression, and immigration status.

 

SIGNATORIES (AS OF 8/16/17):
Alliance for Compassion and Tolerance
American Civil Liberties Union of Texas
Anti-Defamation League – Southwest Region
Asia Society Texas Center
Baker-Ripley Neighborhood Center
Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of
Galveston Houston
The Chinese Community Center
Council on American Islamic Relations – Texas
Daya, Inc.
Emgage
Holocaust Museum Houston
Houston Endowment
Houston GLBT Political Caucus
Houston Immigration Legal Services Collaborative
Houston Police Department
Interfaith Ministries for Greater Houston
Justice For Our Neighbors Houston
Migrant Rights Collective
Montrose Center
My Brothers Keeper (MBK) Houston
OCA-Greater Houston
The Rothko Chapel
Stardust Fund
The Simmons Foundation
Texas Organizing Project
United We Dream – Houston
University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work