MONTREAL -- During the COVID-19 public health crisis, Montrealers with Asian heritage and other groups have at times become the target of racial abuse through taunts, and even physical violence.

The Korean embassy in Montreal sent a message to citizens of Korean descent to be cautious after a Korean man was stabbed outside of a grocery store in the middle of March, and many Asian-Montrealers contact CTV News at the time saying they had noticed a rise in tension towards them since the coronavirus outbreak.

CRARR (The Centre for Research-Action on Race Relations) launched a campaign against racial discrimination and race-based intimidation and violence associated with coronavirus Wednesday.

CRARR campaign against racism

CRARR is partnering with the Institute for Research and Education on Race Relations (IRERR) on the project, and promoting the message: “COVID-10 Does Not Discriminate. Neither Should You!”

The campaign will include:

  • Information on how to deal with racial discrimination and hate crimes, especially online hate and intimidation
  • Up-to-date Information on the acts of racism and hate experienced by Asian and other racialized people
  • Concrete assistance and support for victims of racism and hate
  • If resources permit, an online initiative to provide rapid responses to counter false information and other hate speech that exposes Asian and other racialized Montrealers to hate and vilification resulting in discrimination.

According to a CRARR news release, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to mounting misinformation, scapegoating, stigmatization and “hate openly directed at identifiable minority groups.”

CRARR is calling on all levels of government to devote resources to the situation.