During the COVID-19 pandemic, our country has witnessed an alarming and deeply troubling surge of violence, hatred and discrimination directed at Asians and Asian Americans. We write today to denounce this appalling prejudice and to assure our students, faculty, staff, and postdocs of Asian descent that Penn is unwavering in our commitment to providing you with a safe, welcoming, and supportive campus environment.
We are enormously proud of the large, vibrant, and diverse Asian community at Penn. We are equally proud of the myriad contributions our Asian community make to the striking success of our University. Penn has numerous programs aimed at supporting our international and Asian American students. Just this past year, we formed a Task Force on Support for Asian and Asian American Students and Scholars to coordinate and enhance support to members of the Penn community experiencing increased stigma, bias, discrimination, and violence during the COVID-19 pandemic. We encourage all members of the Penn community to join the Task Force’s #FlattenTheHate Campaign. You can find information about important support resources and read about the campaign and the important work of the Task Force here: https://global.upenn.edu/global-initiatives/task-force-support-asian-and-asian-american-students-scholars
Please be assured that among our highest priorities is ensuring the safety of all our students, faculty, and staff, while fostering a campus community that is rich in our diversity, respect, and tolerance for all groups from every nationality, religion, race, creed, and sexual orientation. We cannot state more clearly or forcefully that we will not tolerate discrimination, hatred, intimidation, or violence that is directed at any member of our University community.
Sadly, we know that discrimination against Asians in America is not a recent development. At this time of great stress for Asian citizens and visitors across the country, we want those of Asian descent who are part of our Penn community to know that we stand strongly and proudly with you. We are committed to working together to address this racism and hatred. We are grateful that you are part of our University community, and we offer our full support at this most difficult and trying time.
Resources and support
If you have any doubt about where to turn, Penn’s HELP Line is available 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, at 215-898-HELP.
Student Health Service: 215-746-3535
Student Intervention Services: 215-898-6081
Office of the Chaplain 215-898-8456
Weingarten Learning Resources Center: 215-573-9235
Special Services (within Division of Public Safety): 215-898-6600
Employee Assistance Program: 866-799-2329
International Student and Scholar Services: 215-898-4661
Pan Asian American Community House: (PAACH): 215-746-6046