Hate in the Time of Covid: Racial Crimes against East Asians
SeriesPhD Lunch Seminars
Speaker(s)Joel Carr (University of Antwerp, Belgium)
LocationErasmus University Rotterdam, Campus Woudestein, Polak 2-16
Date and time
June 15, 2022
12:00 - 13:00
We provide evidence of the impact of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on racial hate crime in England and Wales. Using various data sources, including unique data collected through Freedom of Information (FOI) requests from the UK Police Forces, an event study and regression discontinuity design approaches, we find that racial hate crime against East Asians increased by 60-80%, beginning in late January and persisted until November 2020. This effect was greatest in weeks leading up to the first national lockdown in the UK. The shock was then lower during lockdown, before increasing again in the summer 2020. We present evidence that hate crime increased as COVID-19 cases in China increased and following announcements from the government signalling that China or Chinese individuals posed a public health risk to the UK. This indicates that protectionism played an important role in the observed hate crime spike. The hate crime shock was also positively correlated with the salience of the national lockdown and government policies restricting certain freedoms. This suggests that retaliation further contributed to the rise in hate crime.
Joel Carr is a PhD student in Applied Economics at the University of Antwerp, Belgium. He is wisiting Erasmus University Rotterdam.