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The Westminster City Council has publicly denounced all hateful acts that have escalated during the pandemic against Asian Americans. 

The body on Wednesday unanimously approved a resolution recognizing that the growth of the Asian community within the city has had a strong impact on the success of the local economy. 

The resolution also points out that Westminster is home to Little Saigon, the largest Vietnamese American community outside of Vietnam.   

Council member Carlos Manzo said there is no room for hate and discrimination and that there are no borders when it comes to ethnicity. He added the council encourages Westminster residents to report any hateful anti-Asian incidents.

“This virus has affected us. We need to stand with our Asian community in solidarity and speak up against any discrimination,” Manzo said. 

The city will post a press release on Thursday online regarding the resolution which will also be translated into Vietnamese. 

“Many of Westminster’s essential workers at the front line of the COVID-19 pandemic, in health care, first response, supermarkets and other service industries are of Asian descent,” the resolution reads. “The increased use of anti-Asian rhetoric has resulted in Asians and Asian Americans being harassed, assaulted and scapegoated.” 

The council also urges local law enforcement to investigate and document all credible reports of COVID-19 related hate crimes by working with state and federal law officials, the resolution states. 

At a news conference in Little Saigon in February about hate crimes against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community amid the pandemic, District Attorney Todd Spitzer revealed that more such cases were filed by his office in the last two years than in the few decades prior.

According to District Attorney spokesperson Kimberly Edds, the office pursued 17 hate crime cases in the years 2019 to 2021 while only nine total cases were filed in the previous 25 years combined.

On March 3, a volunteer group called Nailing it for America placed hundreds of luminaries in Fountain Valley and formed the message, “Stop Asian Hate,” to highlight the increase of racism against the community and also honor over 50,000 Californians who lost their lives during the pandemic.

Anthony Robledo is a reporting intern for Voice of OC. He can be reached at arobledo@voiceofoc.org or on Twitter @AnthonyARobledo

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