top of page

In Solidarity with our Asian/AAPI Communities

Updated: Jun 24, 2021

The tragedy that occurred in Atlanta, Georgia this week (on March 16th, 2021) in which 8 lives were lost 6 of whom were women of Asian descent was the most recent example of a hate crime targeting Asian/Asian American & Pacific Islanders (AAPI). Unfortunately, since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, such crimes have become increasingly common throughout the US. We recognize that this anti-Asian violence and hate is historical and intersectional happening prior to the pandemic and not limited to race, but including multiple layers such as gender, sexual orientation, class and more.

We, the Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Alumni Association (JETAA) of Chicago - Illinois, Wisconsin & Indiana, condemn racism and discrimination in all of its forms. As an organization with deep ties to Japan, we will continue to actively improve our operations to foster supportive spaces and a sense of belonging in our alumni community and with partner organizations. We will constantly re-evaluate our internal processes, systems and documentation, including our Community Conduct and Agreements, to look for ways to establish and maintain more equitable, welcoming and safe environments. We are planning to continue our J-Talk series, which this past year highlighted the #BlackLivesMatter movement in Japan & the US, the modern day impact of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki, the Japanese American experience in the Midwest and the intersectionality of the multiracial/multiethnic Japanese American/Nikkei community. We will also continue to support the US-Japan and broader Asian community to increase awareness and action to #StopAsianHate / #StopAAPIHate and support other marginalized communities.

The JET community is built on cultural understanding and exchange, regardless of background or identity. As much as we have partaken in and enjoyed what the Japanese, Japanese-American and greater Asian community have provided us, we must give back the same if not more. We believe this is one of our responsibilities as JET alumni.

Our email,, is open for conversation on how we can better support the members of the Asian/AAPI community together. We encourage everyone to take action by engaging across differences, self-educating and participating in conversations that not only challenge our assumptions and collective identities, but also assist in broadening understandings of how systemic oppression and acts of racism, sexism, discrimination, violence and hate impact communities as a whole.

In deep solidarity with the Asian/AAPI communities and in remembrance of the lives lost this week, we would like to share ways we can strengthen awareness and action together. Some organizations with resources include:

In Solidarity,

JETAA Chicago Leadership Board

Gabriel Coronado, President

Lara (Zara) Espinoza, Vice President

Tyler Blaz, Treasurer

Jocelyn Russell, Secretary

Cassie Conrad, Activities Coordinator

Alexis Palmer, Marketing Coordinator

Dylan Coffey, Outreach Coordinator

Sheila Burt, Philanthropy Coordinator

Constance Judd, Incoming Officer

132 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Position Available: JET Program Coordinator

The Consulate-General of Japan in Chicago is currently looking for a new JET Program Coordinator. You'll be in charge of organizing and coordinating the JET Program application processes, including re

Volunteers needed!

Asian Improv aRts Midwest is looking for volunteers for the following events: Saturday - Sept 7, (at AIRMW building - 4875 N. Elston Ave. Chicago, IL ) North River Side Dance Series ( time TBD, in the



Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Alumni Association of Chicago
Connecting JET alumni in the Midwest - Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana
bottom of page