SAN FRANCISCO - United States Attorney Ismail J. Ramsey hosted the first of several planned forums to combat unlawful acts of hate. U.S. Attorney Ramsey partnered with The Asian American Foundation (TAAF) to organize the meeting arranged to build trust between law enforcement and nonprofit advocates and to create and strengthen coordination between government partners—including law enforcement—and community-based organizations. The first meeting occurred Wednesday, March 29, 2023, at the Deb Colloquium Room of the University of California Law San Francisco and featured leaders from Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) community and federal, state, and local law enforcement.
The theme of “united against hate” was initiated by Attorney General Merrick B. Garland. Attorney General Garland announced the initiative during a White House visit last year and encouraged all 94 U.S. Attorneys’ Offices to host local forums. Program participants engage in robust interaction on topics such as defining hate crimes versus hate incidents; the importance of reporting unlawful acts of hate; providing options for responding to hate incidents when situations do not constitute a federal or state crime; and distinguishing unlawful conduct from protected First Amendment activity, including identifying protected speech versus speech that advocates violence or encourages people to commit hate crimes. Several offices of the Department of Justice provided critical assistance in developing the program, including the Community Relations Service, the Community Oriented Policing Services Office, the FBI, and the Office of Justice Programs.
Members of a dozen AAPI community groups, including TAAF, participated in the program. Several government officials also attended. Government participants included officials having leadership roles such as San Francisco City Attorney David Chiu, District Attorney Brooke Jenkins, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Robert Tripp, UC Law San Francisco Dean of Students Grace Hum, and U.S. Attorney Ramsey, who provided opening remarks for the event.
Special thanks are given to UC Law San Francisco for providing technical assistance and the venue for the event and to TAAF for co-hosting and providing invaluable assistance at every stage of organizing the event.