City councils around Orange County are discussing ways to address and report racism and hate crimes after the rise of anti-Asian hate incidents.
“You’re seeing cities finally acknowledge that yes, racism is a thing in Orange County,” says LA Times columnist Gustavo Arellano.
The city of Irvine recently launched a hate crime reporting portal. On Tuesday, the council will discuss a resolution that would require the city’s police department to post a monthly hate crimes update on their website, a move that the cities of Huntington Beach and Santa Ana have already approved.
“When you hear the term ‘hate crime,’ you don't exactly know what it is, but if you see the actual crime, someone assaulted, someone yelled at, I think that makes it more tangible for the population at large,” says Arellano.
Anaheim and Buena Park will discuss resolutions denouncing racism, a symbolic move that some residents say lacks specific action.
Beyond the actions of city government, Arellano is heartened to see the actions of citizens standing up against racism, like the Ladera Ranch residents guarding the home of a Chinese family who’ve been facing harassment.
“Seeing these actions of neighbors to rally around neighbors, It’s unprecedented,” he says. “It’s a step in the right direction.”