Photo by Ketut Subiyanto from Pexels
A week ago, my younger brother came into my room and told me about an instance in his school where his friend was being called names by peers in his grade. He was of Asian descent and as a result, he was being referred to as ‘coronavirus’. As disgusting as this event is, it is by no means an isolated incident. Prior to COVID-19, a study by researchers at the Australian National University found that 40% of students in Years five to nine reported experiencing a degree of racial discrimination by their peers. They were of non-Anglo or non-European background. This finding was exacerbated when one in three students from the same group reported experiences of racial discrimination in wider society. Since the rise of COVID-19 swept across the globe, there has been a substantial spike in the incidence of racism, with emphasis on Asian descendants. The impacts of this are detrimental not only to their wellbeing at present but also to their long-term health, as young people move towards adulthood.