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Advocates welcome FBI’s anti-hate crime effort, saying cases are dramatically underreported

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GBH, October 2021

The Anti-Defamation League of New England and members of New England’s Chinese American Alliance are applauding the FBI’s new public awareness campaign against hate crimes, but caution that fear and distrust of law enforcement in minority communities leads to underreporting of incidents.

Hua Wang, co-chair of the New England Chinese American Alliance and a member of the Stop Asian Hate campaign, said many in the Asian American community are hesitant to come forward. “I do believe it’s underreported,” Wang said. He added that many in the Asian American community are not completely comfortable with law enforcement for ”a lot of reasons historically and culturally.”

Robert Trestan, the ADL’s regional director, said the FBI’s new public awareness campaign launched last week to encourage the public to report hate crimes is a “welcome move.” But he said the Bureau of Justice Statistics estimates there are more than 100,000 hate crimes nationwide each year even as hate crimes are amongst the most underreported in the United States.

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