Statement of Solidarity with Asian Staff and Students – 04/10/2021

Decolonise Sociology supports and amplifies the following statement from the Race Equality Network in relation to the recent racist attacks in Cambridge.

The Race Equality Network stands in solidarity with Asian staff and students at the University of Cambridge, as well as Asian members of the wider Cambridge community, who have increasingly been the targets of racially-motivated attacks.

The unprovoked assault against Mr Yuanzhao Zhang last month is particularly shocking, but it is by no means an isolated incident against a backdrop of anti-Asian prejudice emboldened by xenophobic portrayals of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In Cambridge, data from the End Everyday Racism campaign showed that over 40% of all racist incidents were reported by those identifying as Asian, with over half of those incidents occurring after February 2020. Across the UK, hate crime towards Asians is reportedly up by 300%, causing fear and trauma as well as physical injury for those targeted.

The Race Equality Network stands with all those affected by racist hate crimes, whether openly violent or more subtle, and calls on all levels of the University to renew their efforts to support and safeguard our Asian members.

Staying Safe

The University is in touch with police about the recent attacks and takes these reports extremely seriously.

Students and staff are reminded that if you feel unsafe in Cambridge, seek help from somewhere where there are other people, like a nearby College or University department. You may call on the Porters of any Cambridge college, or receptionists at any department, for assistance if you feel unable or unsafe to walk or cycle home alone.  They can ring across to your college or University Security and ensure you get back to your accommodation safely.

The police encourage you to report all incidents, no matter how minor. If you need help to do this, please speak to one of our Porters.

Recording Incidents

The End Everyday Racism campaign aims to collect accounts from across the University, in order to understand how racism is experienced at Cambridge and advocate for institutional change. You may wish to record your experience of racism in their database ( formal reporting procedures relating to University staff or student misconduct, visit the Office for Student Conduct, Complaints and Appeals website.

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