An anti-Sinophobia petition labelled ‘UK Universities Must Take Actions Against Sinophobia and anti-Asian Racism’ has been signed by over 1400 academics and students across the UK.
The petition, initiated by Leiyun Ni, a History PhD candidate from the University of Warwick, begins as an open letter to UK universities, citing a recent incident with Dr Peng Wang, a lecturer at the University of Southampton who was attacked by 4 men whilst jogging.
The petition calls for UK universities to “recognise the pain felt by Asian students and staff amidst increasing rampant Sinophobia and anti-Asian racism and to devote more support and resources.”
The petition has suggested ways for UK universities to reduce Sinophobia, including: public statements against anti-Asian racism, providing more trauma counselling, and providing training to staff about how to approach anti-Asian incidences.
Since the outbreak of the pandemic, I have seen an increasing level of racist violence against East and Southeast Asian communities
– Leiyun Ni
Students and academics from universities including Warwick, King’s College London, Leeds, and UCL have signed the petition urging universities to “take immediate action” against anti-Asian racism in academia.
When asked for a comment, Leiyun Ni said: “Since the outbreak of the pandemic, I have seen an increasing level of racist violence against East and Southeast Asian communities.
“As a student, I felt very disappointed that UK universities have taken very limited actions proactively against Sinophobia and anti-Asian racism.”
She added: “Therefore, we want to run this campaign to urge universities to take actions against Sinophobia and anti-Asian racism. Meanwhile, we are keen on promoting public awareness of Sinophobia and anti-Asian racism by circulating this petition.”