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Statement Condemning Hate Crimes on the AAPI Community

OSPA’s Statement on Condemning Hate Crimes on the Asian American and Pacific Islanders (AAPI) Community

The Ohio School Psychology Association (OSPA) offers its deepest sympathies to all of the families and
individuals impacted by the horrific events that occurred in Atlanta, Georgia on March 16, 2021, and
throughout the Asian American and Pacific Islander diaspora. OSPA condemns this violence and calls
upon school psychologists’ initiatives to be inclusive of those within the Asian American and Pacific
Islanders (AAPI) Community. OSPA stands in solidarity with the AAPI community towards embracing
peace, multiculturalism, and inclusiveness as their community experiences such violent acts.
In a recent report from STOP AAPI Hate, 3,795 known hate-driven incidents have occurred in the AAPI
Community within the last year between March 19th, 2020, and February 28th, 2021. Most recently, the
shooting that took place in Atlanta, Georgia is added to this list of violence. Even though the reasoning for
the most recent event that occurred in Atlanta is unknown, it comes at a time when many AAPI individuals
have endured hate-driven incidents. The commonality among these events is the influence of White
supremacy, xenophobia, and racism that is a result of fear and stigma related to the pandemic.
Many AAPI individuals have experienced racism directly related to the pandemic and have even been
blamed for the spread of the virus. Racism, the spread of misinformation, and violence against the AAPI
community must be stopped. As school psychologists, it is our professional responsibility to support all
students, families, and educational communities towards fostering a safe learning environment by
creating positive school climates that do not tolerate hate or violence.

As a reminder, OSPA and its Executive Board have endorsed the School Psychology Unified Anti-Racism
Statement and Call to Action and NASP’s “Calls for Action to End Racism and Violence Against People of
Color” issued on May 29, 2020.

These recommendations, which could be extended to the AAPI community, are as follows:

  • Think critically about structures, systems, and policies that have historically marginalized some
    groups and caused long-term inequities.
    • Recognize and understand the truth about racism and White privilege, and examine our
    perspectives and implicit and explicit biases that contribute to perpetuating these systemic
    problems.
  • Speak up when we see someone saying or acting harmfully to others; name it as racism when it is.
  • Establish the knowledge and systems to recognize and address acute stress and trauma in
    students and staff who experience or are vulnerable to racism.
  • Advocate for and engage in frank discussions about racism and privilege, and provide students
    and staff tools to combat it.
  • Teach and reinforce nonviolent approaches to bringing about changes in public attitudes, policies,
    and behaviors.
  • Advocate for public policies that address the destructive, systemic inequities of poverty and
    racism.

Please find the link to NASP Statement here, with multiple resources available to combat xenophobia
from an educational perspective. These resources and our Association’s position are a reminder to school
psychologists of the importance of embracing diversity, equity, and furthering our professional practices in
culturally-responsive school psychological services.

Respectfully,
Ashley Lockemer, Ed.S, ABSNP - OSPA President
Bradley Paramore, Ed.S, NCSP - OSPA Past-President & Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee Member
Emma Sacha, Ed.S - OSPA President-Elect & Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee Member
Selena M. Spencer, Ed.S. - Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee Co-Chair
Liz Litzinger, Ed.S. - Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee Co-Chair
Dr. Erich Merkle, Ph.D., Ed.S., NCSP, Diversity Equity and Inclusion Committee
Juleta Craig, Ed.S., Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee

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