The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference is asking residents to be on the alert for acts of hostility and/or harassment against Asian-Americans in the midst of the Coronavirus outbreak in the United States.
“We are urging everyone to treat others with compassion during this extremely difficult time,” said Eric Failing, the Executive Director of the PCC. “We have to get through this together. Targeting completely innocent people simply because of their ethnicity is contrary to what this country and what God-fearing people should be all about. If you see this happening, please get help immediately.”
On April 2, a group of Pennsylvania lawmakers joined PA State Police in citing a rise in hate crimes carried out by those who mistakenly associate COVID-19 with China and Asian-American populations. Community leaders across the U.S. have reported isolated instances of such attacks.
PA Rep. Patty Kim (D-Dauphin) said she is joining with the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission to stand behind those residents.
“It is unacceptable (for them to have to) tolerate racial slurs, xenophobic attacks and racial harassment, especially during this global pandemic,” Rep. Kim said. “Pathogens do not discriminate…We stand united together in our fight against hate.”
Failing echoed those sentiments and encouraged Pennsylvanians “to be especially tolerant and compassionate to everyone during this crisis, since tensions may be running much higher than usual.”
The PCC has also condemned Planned Parenthood for continuing to provide abortion services, despite the fact that Governor Wolf has issued an order that prohibits all healthcare providers from performing elective procedures during the current crisis.
“Abortions are wrong anytime – let’s be clear about that,” said Failing. “But that is especially true now during a time of pandemic crisis when our healthcare workers and emergency responders are suffering from shortages of workers and equipment. Allowing Planned Parenthood to perform elective abortions is abhorrent.”
The PCC has received reports that Planned Parenthood has been bringing in patients for abortion procedures and has been asking for donations of healthcare equipment that could be used by hospitals to treat sick people.
“Everybody has been sacrificing during this crisis – that includes residents and businesses,” said Failing. “Everybody, it appears, except Planned Parenthood!”
The Pennsylvania Catholic Conference is based in Harrisburg and is the public affairs arm of Pennsylvania’s Catholic bishops. Stay connected to the PCC at www.pacatholic.com and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PaCatholic.
By the PA Catholic Conference