In light of the recent attacks on Asian international students, University of Auckland Feminists of Colour is hosting a public forum on Friday 8th of April on “Albert Park Attacks: Digging Deeper into Racism, Poverty, and Violence,” to address the underlying issue of racism in Auckland.
The responses to these attacks have created increasing ethnic tensions particularly between Asian, Pasifika and MÄori students, which are exemplified by the online comments on articles, petitions and Facebook groups.
Last Friday, the NZ Chinese Students Association hosted a public forum with speakers from AUT, UoA, Unitec, NZ Police, Auckland Council, the National Party, Labour Party and a representative from the Chinese Consulate. They raised the importance of international students for the economy and the measures they can take to keep safe. The solutions offered were largely short-term and superficial, with one Police officer declaring “this is not an ethnicity issue, it’s a commodity issue.”
“We don’t accept their explanation for these incidents. We are hosting this forum to provide a wider and deeper perspective on the roots of the problem. We want to find long-term solutions for creating safer communities,” says Rachel Cho, spokesperson for UoA Feminists of Colour.
“Auckland prides itself in being a diverse and multicultural city, but these attacks and the responses clearly show that racial tensions exist,” she continues.
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