San Francisco police and community groups are trying to promote an important tool that could remove an obstacle to reporting crimes against the Asian community.
There are now signs in Chinatown that they are showing up more frequently as they advertise an anonymous notice line that can report crimes in Cantonese and Mandarin. 415-558-5588.
“We worked to distribute 20,000 of these flyers with fact sheets and cards,” said Alan Wong of the Asian Pacific Islander’s American Public Affairs Association.
Wong and other executives advertised the new hotline on Friday.
“We think that access to languages is very important for the Chinese community. This is a way to ensure we are closing that communication gap with an increasing number of hate and other crimes and the Asian community, “added Wong.
The phone number is 415-558-5588. In an emergency, officials recommend that people still need to call 911 as this is not a substitute. But when people have information about a crime, they can use it to share what they know.
“I’m not an isolated case in this city. I am sure many people face the same problem. So if everyone can stand up to report a case, they will, ”said Derek Tam, a San Francisco resident.
Tam said this was one of the reasons he got in touch. He told NBC Bay Area that he called the police in late March after working as a salesman at Pop-up in the San Francisco Ferry Building when a man tried to pick up his phone.
“He’s getting really angry,” he said. “He just punched me in the face. He hit my left check and said come back to your (expletive) country,” he said.
Tam’s Dragon Papa store in Chinatown is temporarily closed. He was stunned that this happened. But he said people tried to help him.
“I hear the attack case in some Chinese media, but I never think it will happen to me,” he said.
Tam thinks the new hotline is good for the community to have more ways to reach the police. He also believes that more needs to be done.