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COVID-19 and Discrimination

On May 15th, Dr. Yuhsien Wu was invited by Deutsche Bank, one of Wall Street's most prestigious investment institutions, to participate in the Multicultural Partnership’s Asian Leadership Forum’s Asian Pacific American Heritage Month online discussion section. Dr. Wu spoke before Deutsche Bank’s multicultural staff on the topic of “Combating COVID-19 and Discrimination.” She covered ways in which the epidemic has heightened tensions, stoked conflict, and resulted in discrimination among different ethnic groups here in the US, the impact on the Asian-American community in particular, as well as the ways in which this discrimination is based on longstanding cultural, historical, and systemic causes.

To grapple with these issues, Dr. Wu laid out a variety of methods we can use to understand and combat these trends. This includes comprehending the psychological and sociological realities that underpin this kind of behavior, as well as the ways in which each of us can show leadership to counteract these trends. Finally, Dr. Wu conducted a Q&A section which focused mainly on specific instances of this kind of discrimination we have seen in news media during this epidemic.

By the end of the talk, both the audience members and Dr. Wu had come to a deeper understanding of the challenges that the epidemic and the resulting quarantines have brought into our lives as well as how best to deal with them, both in the short term as well as further down the line. We’re pleased to say that Dr. Wu has already been approached by the University of Illinois as well as other organizations with an invitation to give a similar online lecture. For her part, Dr. Wu is eager to help even more people by giving them the tools to face the increase of discrimination that this crisis has brought. Through collective action, individual initiative, and inspired leadership, we can help each other to build a fairer and more accepting society.

"Racism is such a sensitive topic, but one that is close to my heart. I don't expect to eliminate racism, but I hope to bring awareness so that more people can think about this topic and show empathy towards those who are affected by it." - Dr. Yuhsien Wu

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