New York, NY, July 19, 2022 … ADL (the Anti-Defamation League), the nation’s leading organization fighting antisemitism, and the Japanese American Citizens League, the oldest and largest Asian American civil rights organization in the U.S., have launched a new partnership exploring the intersection of antisemitism and hatred against the anti-Asian American and Pacific Islander community.
As part of the effort, the organizations will be offering a series of programs designed to increase awareness of prejudice and discrimination affecting both communities. During the COVID pandemic, hate crimes and incidents against both communities reached historic levels. ADL reported an all-time record for antisemitic incidents in 2021, as did the AAPI community.
“As two groups that have witnessed historic increases in antisemitism and hatred, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, we saw an opportunity for us to create a space for dialogue and discussion around these shared challenges facing our communities,” said Jonathan Greenblatt, ADL CEO and National Director. “Our goal is to highlight both anti-AAPI prejudice and discrimination, along with antisemitism, while also promoting collaboration between both communities.”
The partnership will also work to increase awareness of the historical and cultural connections between Jewish and Japanese Americans.
ADL and JACL will be developing programming related to these issues while also creating opportunities for JACL district councils and ADL regional offices to connect at the local level. The organizations held events in May in honor of Jewish American and AAPI heritage months and more programs are scheduled to take place later this year.
The programming has included:
- June 8: ADL and JACL co-hosted a Virtual Pilgrimage to Heart Mountain: A Discussion on Identity, Holocaust, and Incarceration. The pilgrimage was a virtual mission to shed light on this dark moment in history, coupled with a discussion of scholars on the shared historical impacts of the Holocaust and Japanese incarceration.
- May 25: ADL and JACL co-hosted “Japanese and Jewish,” a panel on the intersection of Jewish and Japanese identity, anti-AAPI hate, and antisemitism. Aaron Keyak, Deputy Special Envoy to Combat and Monitor Antisemitism with the State Department, and Elad Strohmayer, a spokesperson with the Israeli embassy, offered opening remarks.
- May 17: ADL and JACL co-hosted a reception in Los Angeles for Jewish and Japanese leaders in honor of Jewish American heritage month and AAPI month featuring the deputy consul generals from both the Israeli and the Japanese consulates. Taking place at a historic loft in downtown Los Angeles, the deputy consul generals from the Israeli and Japanese consulates led a conversation about allyship between both communities.