Labor MP Andrew Giles calls for national anti-racism campaign

The coronavirus outbreak is being used as an excuse for xenophobic behaviour towards Asians, Labor frontbencher Andrew Giles will warn on Wednesday as he calls for a new national anti-racism campaign.

Pointing to the example of a News Corp columnist mocking the name of former race discrimination commissioner Tim Soutphommasane, Mr Giles will sound the alarm about a “creeping normalisation of hate and racism” in Australia.

Labor MP Andrew Giles says the party’s lesson from the election should not be to “move to the right”.Credit:Andrew Meares

Citing “near-constant denigration” of African-Australians in some parts of the media, violent attacks on people of Asian appearance in Melbourne and Sydney in recent years and a spike in attacks on Australian Muslims, the opposition spokesman for multicultural affairs will say racism in Australia is on the rise.

Seven years since the last national anti-racism campaign was launched by the Gillard government, he will say the government must renew its commitment to anti-racism and equality, “remembering that the standard we walk past is the standard we accept”.


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