Leaders go door-to-door with resources for Asian-owned businesses

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SAN DIEGO — Police, city and county leaders walked door-to-door in San Diego’s best-known district for Asian-owned businesses Thursday, offering resources and showing their support.

Within the last month, according to the San Diego Police Department, at least 15 businesses along the Convoy corridor have been broken into. The break-ins come amid a national reckoning with this year’s increase in acts of violence and hate toward the Asian American and Pacific Islander communities.

“There is no place for hate to exist among us. There is no place for hate crimes to happen in our beautiful city,” said Lilly Cheng, the board chair for the San Diego Chinese Historical Community.

Cheng said it is very important for San Diego to include the AAPI community in neighborhood and business events to strengthen the bond of the entire city.

San Diego’s District 6, where Thursday’s event was held, is home to the largest concentration of Asian Americans in the city. “Just look at Convoy [and] Mira Mesa. These are really where a lot of our Asian businesses have established themselves,” District 6 Councilman Chris Cate said.

Mayor Todd Gloria, District Attorney Summer Stephan and San Diego Police Chief David Nisleit also gathered at the public symposium. The group went door-to-door hand-delivering packets with important phone numbers and educational resources.

“This is deeply personal,” Gloria said. “I’m part Filipino and I’m the first Asian/Pacific Islander mayor of the city, and our community is hurting.”

Since the COVID-19 pandemic, acts of violence against the AAPI communities are on the rise both nationally and locally; yet, San Diego leaders said many of the crimes go unreported.

District Attorney Summer Stephan urged residents to utilize the Hate Crimes Hotline at 619-515-8805 or to report crimes through this online form.

“Our tip line has received over 120 tips and each call has received a response, so we want you to use it in addition to relying first place on law enforcement,” Stephan said.

“With the rash of acts happening across the country, we want to make sure that our residents feel empowered with those tools and resources to feel comfortable in their daily activities,” Cate said.

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