More Than Half of Asian Canadians Experienced Discrimination in Past Year

More than half of Asian Canadians have suffered discrimination over the past year, according to a new survey from the Angus Reid Institute.

In the survey published Tuesday, 58 percent of respondents said they have experienced incidents of discrimination in the past 12 months. More than a quarter — 28 percent — said these situations happen “all the time” or “often.”

People who are young and lower-income are more likely to experience more intense forms of bigotry, according to the survey.

The survey was conducted online in conjunction with the University of British Columbia. The institute surveyed a total of 631 people — 580 Canadians who self-identify as ethnically Chinese, as well as 77 individuals who self-identify as ethnically East Asian or Southeast Asian.

Other key findings include how incidents have been perceived, with the survey suggesting 53 percent of Asian Canadians who experienced racism said the incidents were hurtful and have stayed with them.

Two in five, or 38 percent, of respondents who had faced discrimination, said they were troubled but able to put it aside, while nine percent said they have not been affected, according to the survey’s results.

The institute also questioned a further 1,877 respondents who identified as non-Asian for an upcoming series examining diversity and racism in Canada. One in five said they felt “most or all Asian Canadians do not contribute to the broader community,” the institute said.

Doris Mah, the founder of the Stand With Asians Coalition, said that finding stood out. “This is appalling,” Mah told CBC News.

Ms. Mah was born in Hong Kong and emigrated to Canada with her family more than 30 years ago.

She points to how Chinese workers were crucial to the construction of the Canadian Pacific Railway as just one of the many contributions from the Asian community.

Since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, reports of anti-Asian racism and xenophobia have risen in B.C.

In late March of this year, 500 people gathered at the Vancouver Art Gallery to denounce the hate.

Several other cities in B.C., including Victoria, have also made proclamations denouncing racism and pledging programs to help combat it.

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