Covid – 19 bias : New York City Commission on Human Rights has explained how to respond

New York City Commission on Human Rights through teleconference  has trained  in April 21, 2020 several people on how to respond to covid – 19 bias as many people are victims of any kind of harassment not only in the United of America but also across the world.

Covid – 19 is not only killing human beings but it is also hurting people’s feeling and dignity. Since it appears in Wuhan in China, Chinese immigrants across some countries become legitimate targets of being responsible of the virus. Ironically African immigrants  have been vilipended in the streets of China as they accuse them of spreading the virus.  And recently  two French doctors have overtly  said  that Africa is the right place to test coronavirus vaccine.

Racism, bias, and so on,  intertwin well with a deadly  virus no one in the earth planet wants to associate with.

New York City Commission on Human Rights, which  has considered the situation as “enough is enough,” has tackled it through training by giving the adequate tools to better responding when facing  situations bias and racism are  rulers.

Facilitated by Doreen Bermudez, and Christel N. Onwu, respectively  Managing Director for Programming Community Relations Bureau, and Director of Social Work Unit of  NYC Commission on Human Rights, the training gave an overview of how to intervene as bystander when facing bias and racism situation.

According to Ms. Doreen “ it  is not always easy to intervene as there are potential barriers such as language barrier, fear for your own safety, fear of exposure, don’t know what to do …”

She has designed four ( 4) steps to follow for any intervention:

  • The five “ Ds” of active bystander intervention, which are: direct, delegate, distract, delay, and document.
  • Verbal de – escalation strategies : Make « I » statement, saying “no,” and naming the behavior are some examples.
  • Calling – in strategies: Deep breathing, check in with yourselves, attack the idea and not the person, are some examples.
  • Awareness tips for upstanders: Decide the risk level, project calm, know your triggers, are some examples.

Joseph Onwu the discriminatory harassment investigator for  NYC Commission on Human Rights, said they have identified 250 cases related to covid – 19 discrimination.


Bazona Barnabe Bado
























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