Press Release

Press Release: SFPD’s Chinese Language Hotline to Report Hate Crimes

APAPA Publicizes Chinese Language SFPD Hotline at 415-558-5588 to Report Hate Crimes and New Initiatives to Make SFPD Accessible

From: Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association (APAPA)

APAPA board members and SF Police Commissioner Larry Yee held a media round table in Chinatown to publicize a San Francisco Police Department hotline created in order to increase SFPD language access for the Cantonese and Mandarin speaking Chinese community. 

APAPA leaders successfully lobbied the Mayor’s office and SFPD to create the hotline after increasing attacks and hate crimes against Asian Americans. The hotline will make it easier for Chinese community members to report hate and other crimes. 

The Chinese hotline number is 415-558-5588. The hotline number includes lucky Chinese numbers such as eight to offer further encouragement to use the hotline. Private donations from APAPA board members have enabled the distribution of 25,000 informational flyers and cards to date. This month, APAPA is announcing 20,000 newly printed informational flyers made possible by private APAPA board donations. In addition, APAPA is now lobbying to increase the SFPD hotline access to other major languages in San Francisco.

“I’m proud that the SF Police Department now has a bilingual Chinese hotline available to the Cantonese and Mandarin speaking communities,” said Police Commissioner Larry Yee. “Now is the time for SFPD to increase language access and ensure victims’ voices are heard.”

Steven Lee, an APAPA board member and Entertainment Commissioner emphatically stated, “Asians must be silent no more!! Witness an assault? Use this Chinese tip line and help stop hate crimes!”

“It’s important to have a Cantonese and Mandarin language hotline to make it accessible for our Chinese community to report hate crimes,” said Alan Wong, an APAPA board member and City College Trustee. “I had to help a Chinese elder translate after she got punched in the eye and shoved off a bus in a random act of violence. She told me the police couldn’t communicate with her. It’s time for our community to speak up but that means SFPD must have appropriate language services for the Chinese population.

“The language barrier makes it difficult for victims to report crime and have mutual understanding with police,” said Ashley Cheng. “This hotline will make people more comfortable with reporting hate crimes.”

“Language access has long been an issue in API immigrant communities,” said Nancy Tung, an APAPA board member and Deputy District Attorney. “We can’t expect immigrant communities to engage with law enforcement if they don’t have appropriate services to report crime and be understood.  This tipline is a small step in the right direction, but there is much work still to do.  We will continue to advocate for culturally competent and language competent police officers, as well as other victim related services to ensure a seamless process for non-English speaking crime victims.”

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