The Humans and Captain Marvel star, Gemma Chan, has backed a campaign to raise money for the East and South East Asian (ESEA) community amid an increase in anti-Asian hate crime.
The 38-year-old actor has revealed that her parents have faced verbal attacks since the beginning of the pandemic. She has joined a long list of ESEA members calling for more action and support to combat these random attacks.
“Like many others, I worry for family members every time they leave the house or use public transport,” she revealed.
Actor Henry Golding, who starred in Guy Ritchie’s The Gentlemen, has also pledged his backing for the GoFundMe initiative.
Golding, Chan’s Crazy Rich Asians co-star wrote on Instagram: “Asian hate has been seeping into all parts of the world, not just in America.”
In Chan’s lengthy Instagram post, the actress discussed the “disturbing” rise in hate crimes against members of the ESEA community, or those who appear to be, has shown the issue is a global one.
Chan said: “Whilst I’m relieved that these attacks didn’t become physical, unfortunately that is often not the case, such as the unprovoked attack on a 26-year-old woman in Edinburgh last week which ended in her hospitalisation, the vicious beating of a university lecturer who was out jogging in Southampton and the physical assault of Singaporean student Jonathan Mok on Oxford Street, amongst many others.”
“What’s even more concerning is that the recorded figures are likely an underestimation because many incidents go unreported, both to the police and in the media,” Chan continued.
In the post, Chan also revealed that her mother worked for the NHS for most of her life, but had still been subjected to abuse: “My mum has worked for the NHS for most of her life – she and my dad have been followed and subjected to a number of verbal assaults since the beginning of the pandemic.”
The GoFundMe campaign, entitled the ESEA Community Fund, will issue grants to grassroots organisations supporting ESEA and wider communities. As of Monday 11th May, the fundraiser had raised £38,300 of its £50,000 objective.
Other stars from an East Asian background have weighed in on the discussion voicing concern about the rise in hate crime against the Asian community, the most notable of these being Olivia Munn and Killing Eve actress Sandra Oh.
It has been reported that in the US last year, there were over 2,800 incidents of hate towards the ESEA community.