March 2, 2022 at 6:35 p.m.

Condemning Anti-Asian Violence

Dear CSSW Community,

Yesterday we saw the heartbreaking news of the death of GuiYing Ma, an Asian-American woman from Queens. She was attacked last November, leaving her in a coma for 10 weeks. Her loss is the latest in a series of brutal attacks on those of Asian descent in New York City; we send our deepest condolences to her family and all those who have been impacted by such violence and loss.

It is horrifying to consider the frequency with which we are sending these notes out—and a testament to how much work our country needs to do in protecting marginalized communities. Anti-Asian hate crimes have increased dramatically during the course of the COVID pandemic. Furthermore, this trend extends well beyond NYC. The Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism estimates that anti-Asian violence increased by 339% in 2021 versus 2020. We recognize, too, that many of these attacks are perpetrated by individuals in desperate need of mental health care, another area in which our society falls woefully short in providing for vulnerable communities.

This cannot be tolerated. The collective trauma and detriments to mental health among affected communities are mounting and must be reversed. Important organizations like Stop AAPI Hate offer resources, opportunities to report, be educated, and press for needed legislation. While this must be a nationwide effort, we can also do more to support our local communities. Below this message are resources assembled by the wonderful and committed students in the API Caucus, as well as by our Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.

We have to acknowledge this hate, heighten our awareness about these continued acts of racism, and support and stand in solidarity with Asian and Pacific Islander members of our community.

In community,

Melissa Begg

Dean & Professor

Karma Lowe

Associate Dean

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion, and Community Engagement


Columbia Resources:

Counseling and Psychological Services

  • Short-term counseling
  • Refers out for long-term therapy
  • CU Health’s Support Space for Asian Students

  • January 27 – March 10, 2022 on Thursdays from 3:00 – 4:00 PM EST
  • Columbia’s Department of Public Safety

  • Main line: (212) 854-2797
  • Emergency line: (212) 854-5555 (saving the emergency number can be another tool for safety precaution)
  • If you need to report a crime to Columbia

  • On campus extension: x4-5555
  • Off campus phone: (212) 854-5555
  • If able, download the Lion Safe App that features all safety resources Columbia offers

    List of Area Safe Havens

  • There are various stores around campus with a red lion in their window signifying that they partner with Columbia’s safety department. You can go inside to ask for support and they will contact the safety department.
  • Columbia Safety Escort Services

  • Call (212) 854 SAFE(7233) to request an escort
  • Available between 7:00pm- 3:00am 7 days a week
  • Service is available from West 108th St to West 110th St between Amsterdam Ave and Riverside Dr; West 111th St to West 122nd St between Morningside Dr and Riverside Dr
  • Free Columbia Shuttle ServiceSee Areas Covered HERE

    CSSW Panel Discussion: Stigma and Racism in Times of Epidemics (April 17, 2020)

    Additional Resources

    Hollaback! Bystander Intervention Resources can be found here.

    AAJC Facts, Reporting, Trainings & Community Resources can be found here.

    Asian Mental Health Collective | Mental Health Resources for API communities can be found here.

    NYC Office for the Prevention of Hate Crimes | COVID-19-related Anti-Bias Education Resource Guide can be found here. COVID-19 related hate and bias Incidents fact sheet and reporting in Arabic, Urdu, Korean, Bengali, Yiddish, Vietnamese, Japanese, Chinese, and more can be found here.

    Asian Therapist Directory via Asians for Mental Health

  • Asian Therapist Directory via Asian Mental Health Collective
  • South Asian Therapists Directory
  • Asian Mental Health Project
  • Download Noonlight (Safety app or smartphone if you feel like you are in an unsafe situation
  • Safety & Prevention Tools

  • Pepper Spray
    • Amazon $10 (if able to get shipped to you)
    • May also be available at nearby campus stores
      • Target: 795 Columbus Ave
      • Home Depot: 600 Exterior St
  • Safety Keychain $19 which includes a safety alarm, emergency whistle, defense keychain and more
  • Personal Safety Alarm $11
  • Invisawear $109+ (Currently 15% off!) safety bracelets, necklaces, and keychains with ADT security
    • If you click the button twice it will notify your preselected emergency contacts and ADT, and they will be able to track you and send emergency services if needed

    Other General Tips

    We again want to emphasize that we share in folks’ frustration that this is where we are, where we even have to consider such precautions. While incredibly disheartening, we do want you to know your options, continue to remain vigilant, and manage your safety as best as you can. Other ideas (and welcome folks to share in our community):

  • Share your location with close friends and family members whenever applicable.
  • When waiting for the subway, keep your back against the wall and be wary of surroundings.
  • Reduce phone and airpod usage, particularly when alone in a public space.
  • Update your emergency contacts with close friends and family members within closest proximity to your current city.
  • Even while traveling in groups, please stay alert at all times.