APALA releases guidance on protecting workers from xenophobia amid coronavirus outbreak

Over 2 million Asian American and Pacific Islanders workers are facing xenophobic and racial discrimination in health care, transportation, and other workplaces in addition to increased exposure to communicable diseases, says the Asian Pacific American Labor Alliance (APALA).

Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, the AFL-CIO constituency group is speaking up on how xenophobia and racism interact with America’s inadequate health care system and outdated labor laws to endanger workers and hinder disease prevention.

“Health care workers are the ones who care for us when we are sick, but as workers on the frontlines they face an increased exposure to illness,” said APALA National Executive Board Member Ligaya Domingo in a press statement. “COVID-19 is preventable and treatable, but only if we ensure working people are informed and protected.”

Since the novel coronavirus outbreak hit the news in December 2019, there have been increased reports of hate crimes and other acts of discrimination against Asian people, including blatant verbal and physical attacks, around the world. APALA says employers must include a protocol against racial discrimination in their responses to COVID-19 to prevent racism spreading along with the coronavirus.

Click here to access resources, including fliers, for how to support AAPI (Asian American and Pacific Islander) workers in your workplace.

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