SAN FRANCISCO - As we celebrate Asian American Pacific Islander Heritage month, statements of solidarity with the Asian American community are popping up on storefronts throughout the Bay Area. A team of Asian designers has also created a "Stop Asian Hate" t-shirt collection.
In San Francisco’s Dogpatch neighborhood, people walking by retail store Stashed will notice its windows have a message.
"We just really wanted to get a clear message across that we don’t want to tolerate any hate against anyone for any reason," said Stashed General Manager Manne Gonzalez.
Window clings that say, "No room for hate," "Respect our elders" and "Protect Asian lives" are the statements of solidarity condemning Xenophobia and violence against Asian Americans.
It’s also a way for a business to show it’s a safe space.
"We want to make sure that we create a space for people who are feeling pressure or oppression to come here and to seek help so we want to be a refuge to anyone," said Gonzalez.
"When we came up with the idea, there was a clip that was going viral in New York where an older Asian woman was getting beat down and a security guard closed the door and that’s the perfect example of what we don’t want," said Justin Joo, creative lead for "Unite the Bay" project.
Justin Joo wanted to help amid a spike of Asian hate crimes.
"As far as I know the Bay is like one of the epicenters where all this hate is happening against the Asian community," said Joo.
Joo also helped bring 14 different designers all Asian and from the Bay Area together to create t-shirts.
Some shirts said, "Hate is a virus, love is the cure" and "Love our people like you love our food." Designer and actor Taylor Takahashi from the movie "Boogie" designed a shirt.
"I chose not your model minority which has been my experience growing up in the Bay Area playing basketball," said Takahashi.
On the front of Takahashi’s shirt, it reads global friendships with images of the Bay Bridge and a basketball hoop.
Proceeds from the shirts will go to the AAPI Community Fund, Vietnamese American Community Center of the East Bay and to Bay Area victims of hate.
Across the street, the barber shop has jumped on board.
"We need to protect our families, it starts with this, it’s a small step but creating awareness is the first step in the entire campaign," said Dogpatch Barber & Shave Owner Chris Eliares.
It’s a way for the community to come together and to unite the Bay.
"We are bringing the community together to protect each other because at the heart of this thing that’s what we really need, we need people to look after one another," said Joo.
If you are interested in a window cling or a shirt, contact stashed in San Francisco at (415) 854-5940 or visit https://stashedsf.com.
Azenith Smith is a reporter for KTVU. Email Azenith at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow her on Twitter and Instagram @AzenithKTVU or Facebook or ktvu.com.