On Tuesday, June 14 around 10pm, an Asian man was attacked on University Ave, close to the UW-Madison campus.
The victim is a PhD student at UW-Madison. In posts circulating online on social media, he wrote that he was attacked by five strangers on University Avenue, pulled to the ground, and punched in the face. He was left bleeding from his ear. Another person of Asian heritage was attacked Tuesday night, only a few blocks away and by attackers who fit a similar description.
Both incidents were reported to City of Madison police, and are listed online in Chief Barnes’ blog. A spokesperson for Madison police did not return a request for comment by broadcast today.
UW-Madison put out a press release today saying they had been made aware of the incidents.
“Initial reports came from members of our Asian, Pacific Islander and Desi American communities, and we are aware that in recent years these communities have faced increased threats to their safety, well-being, and sense of belonging. We recognize the safety concerns and trauma these actions may cause,” said the press release.
UW-Madison officials say that UW-Madison and Madison police are investigating.
“University Police and Madison Police are working together to gather more details and information. The reports to campus occurred amidst a number of other incidents of violence reported in recent days to Madison Police,” the release continued.
In response, members of the UW-Madison Asian student community are organizing a protest and rally against Asian hate. That’s planned for tomorrow, Friday, from 4 p.m to 6 p.m. Protesters will march from the Capitol steps on state street to Library Mall. Organizers say they’re aiming to raise awareness against racist attacks against Asian communities.
“We want to raise people’s awareness that Asian hate is there and also Asian students are not safe in the campus areas. We want UW-Madison to really create an inclusive and safe environment for all of the students, especially Asian students,” said one organizer of the rally who requested she be anonymous.
“Everyone is welcome and send love to everyone to stand with Asian people.”
Participants should bring #StopAsianHate sign, according to the Facebook event.
This attack comes after several other anti-Asian attacks on the UW-Madison campus. Last October, a man spit on an Asian-American student while referencing COVID-19, and in November an Asian student was assaulted while being called an ethnic slur. Additional reports of hate and bias are listed online here.
Stop AAPI Hate is a national organization that tracks hate crimes, violence, and discrimination against folks who are Asian American and Pacific Islander. Over almost a two-year period in 2020 and 2021, the organization received nearly 11,000 instances of hate nationwide. According to the report, physical assault was the second largest category of total reported incidents.