“COVID is being given a face, and it’s the face of an East Asian person wearing a mask"
The UK Parliament is holding its “first ever” debate dedicated to racism experienced by East Asian people.
British Chinese Labour MP Sarah Owen proposed the debate after a three-fold increase in hate crimes towards Chinese people amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
Owen, who represents Luton North, highlighted how British media used stock photographs of East Asians for general Coronavirus articles.
Speaking to Sky News, Owen said, “COVID is being given a face, and it’s the face of an East Asian person wearing a mask.”
“Just take a look at social media and see the level of either conspiracy theories or the kind of dehumanisation you’re seeing towards Chinese and East Asian people,” she added.
According to Protection Approaches, Hate crimes directed towards British East and South East Asians increased 300% on previous years. Global use of Twitter hashtags inciting violence towards China and Chinese people increased 900%.
“We’re either just being accused of eating bat soup and inhumane practices around food, or we are somehow in charge of some global conspiracy around COVID-19,” Owens added.
The debate will be held at 430pm GMT.
Last month, Owen vocalised how the Coronavirus pandemic has “lifted the lid” on anti-Asian racism.
— Sarah Owen MP (@SarahOwen_) October 13, 2020