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Asian Americans more concerned about COVID-19

Photo via Wikimedia Creative Commons by Alberto Giuliani

A new survey has found Asian Americans are more likely to be concerned about COVID-19 than other Americans despite being less likely to know someone who has it.

More than 9 out of 10 of Asian Americans say they are concerned about COVID-19 compared to 79 percent of other Americans, according to market research firm Morning Consult.

13% of Asian Americans say they know someone who has the coronavirus compared to 19% of other adults polled.

35% of Asian Americans also say their mental health has deteriorated since the outbreak of the pandemic.

That is not surprising since Asian Americans have seen a surge of anti-Asian racism since that time.

“COVID is just one catalytic point that makes it even more important to do this work together, because the pandemic has brought out racism around Asian Americans that we haven’t seen for quite a while,” said  Dr. Eric Tang who’s with the University of Texas, Austin. “When I look at the alarming data about the rates of depression and anxiety among Asian American students and the tragic number of suicides among Asian American students, I say to myself, this could be something that, across class differences, Asian American students and the community in general could rally around,” he said during a U of T podcast with the Hoggs Foundation for Mental Health.

Morning Consult graphic

According to McKinsey, The Crisis Text Line which provides free mental health support via text saw a 39% spike in texts from Asian Americans.

Yet only 5.8% of Asian Americans sought any type of mental health services compared to 19% of White Americans. Many blame a cultural stigma for this huge gap.

Asian-owned businesses are overrepresented in some of the hardest hit sectors of the community. Asian-owned businesses comprise 26% in the hotel and food service industry, 17% of retail trade, and 11% of education-services businesses. Yet they make up just 6% of the population.

McKinsey reports Asian Americans are 75% less likely to have received a Paycheck Protection Program loan because they are less likely to have an existing relationship with a mainstream bank or credit union.

As high as that is, other People of Color are even less likely to have received a PPP loan- 95% for Black Americans, 91% for Latinos and 91% for Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders.

This situation also is blamed for longer term unemployment for Asian Americans.

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