Coronavirus Outbreak Sparks Racism Against Asians

The Coronavirus outbreak is believed to have originated in a seafood market in Wuhan, China. The flu-like illness is both deadly and contagious, with thousands of cases confirmed globally and over 2,700 deaths. Symptoms include fever, cough, and shortness of breath. There are now at least 60 confirmed cases in the United States. As the virus is spreading globally, so are racist attacks against Asians. Many are comparing this discrimination to that which occurred during the SARS epidemic in 2003, which also originated in China.

Attacks On Asians Across the Globe

Regardless of whether someone is actually from China, Asian Americans across the nation are facing racist attacks. For example, in New York City, a man assaulted an Asian woman who wore a surgical mask, calling her a "diseased b****." In Los Angeles, a man on the subway called the Chinese “filthy” and said "every disease has ever came from China." A Lyft driver in California refused to take Asian riders. At a restaurant in Seoul, a red sign in the window read “no Chinese allowed.” Additionally, New York’s Chinatown has taken financial hits, with far fewer customers dining at Chinese restaurants. However, there have been no confirmed Coronavirus cases in New York. The global hashtag #JeNeSuisPasUnVirus -- French for "I am not a virus”-- has been used by Asians across the world who are standing up to discrimination. Many argue that the Coronavirus fears are unfounded because the virus has killed far fewer people than the flu. The director of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, has instructed leaders to stop stigma and hate amid the coronavirus outbreak.

Racial Discrimination in the Workplace

With racial attacks in the U.S. increasing, it’s likely that Asian Americans will face racial discrimination in the workplace as well. Workplace discrimination on the basis of race is illegal. Discrimination can occur either when an employee or job applicant is treated less favorably solely on the basis of race. Discrimination is illegal regarding any aspect of employment, such as hiring, promotions, firing, lay-offs, job responsibilities, and more. Harassment on the basis of race is also illegal in the workplace. Although the law does not prevent offhand offensive jokes, harassment is illegal when it rises to the level of a hostile or offensive work environment or it causes an adverse employment decision. If you have experienced racial discrimination in the workplace, you should speak with an experienced employment attorney. 

Seek Legal Assistance Today

If you have experienced racial discrimination in the workplace, seek legal assistance today. The Law Office of Christopher Q. Davis, located in New York City, can assist you. Contact us today at (646) 430-7930 to schedule a free case evaluation and receive experienced legal counsel.