Police use tear gas against protesters in Ferguson, MO, on August 14 • Photo by Loavesofbread
Police use tear gas against protesters in Ferguson, MO, on August 14 • Photo by Loavesofbread

The following is a statement from the national Asian Pacific American Advocates(OCA):

Asian Pacific American Advocates(OCA), a national membership-driven organization of community advocates dedicated to advancing the social, political, and economic well-being of Asian Pacific Americans (APAs), sends its deepest condolences to the family of Michael Brown and denounces the outrageous abuse of civil rights against demonstrators in Ferguson, Missouri.

“OCA extends our deepest condolences to the Brown family and stands in solidarity with the African American community in this most troubling time. Excessive use of police force, continued racial and religious profiling, and the lack of accountability for officers involved in these cases have led not only to the death of Michael Brown, but a long list of deaths from the African American community and other communities of color,” said Sharon M. Wong, OCA National President. “The reports and investigations from the Ferguson police department have been inadequate in addressing the role of their officer in the shooting and have instead focused on demonizing the character of Michael Brown. That is unacceptable. We call on a full and transparent investigation into this case by the local authorities and by the Department of Justice.”

“The incidents in Ferguson are an outrageous abuse of civil rights against the African American community. The reactions by local police to peacful protesters, from their use of police dogs to tear gases thrown at demonstrators, are clear violations of the Ferguson community’s constitutional right to peacefully assemble,” said Ken Lee, OCA Acting Chief Executive Officer. “Likewise, the curfew imposed by the Governor on civilians limits that same right. We must provide protections for the African American community to grieve the death of this youth and protest the injustice that they have continually faced instead of limiting them.”

“Our nation must address the root causes that continue to allow the excessive use of police force and profiling of African, Latino, Southeast Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Islander American communities. We call for legislation that will prevent such tragedies from occurring again and that will hold officers accountable for their actions,” said Miriam Yeung, OCA National Vice President of Public Affairs. “Asian Pacific American communities have not been exempt from these issues. The deaths of Fong Lee in Minneapolis, Minnesota and Matangi Tai in Mesa, Arizona at the hands of those who have sworn to protect our communities are clear examples that these issues cut across all racial, ethnic, and religious lines. OCA stands in solidarity with the residents of Ferguson in calling for justice and change.”

The OCA St. Louis Chapter also released a statement regarding the effects of the Ferguson incidents on locally owned Asian Pacific American businesses.

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