Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

The SCBWI Stands in Solidarity with our Asian Family

If anyone understands the power of language and the impact of an image it would be writers, illustrators, and translators of children’s books. We wield our ink, pencils, paint, and keyboards with care because we understand we could impact children for generations. While we tell them important truths because we trust their capacity for growth and understanding, we don’t want one other family to have to have “the talk” with their children about how to avoid being attacked outside their homes.

One has to wonder if stereotyped images, language, and portrayals in popular culture impacted those who thought it was okay to rename COVID-19 using racist slurs and misplacing blame in a way that has seen exponentially increasing violence against Asian Americans. The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators stands in solidarity with the Asian members of our human family and their right to stay safe, alive, and humanized.  “Members of the Asian, Asian American, and Asian Pacific Islander community have experienced unique vulnerability as targets of racism and xenophobia as anxiety and fear over COVID-19 has spread over the past several months.” Stereotypes, tropes, and circumstance will never justify exclusion, racism, or violence towards human beings.

As writers, illustrators, and translators of children’s literature, we are responsible for promoting equity and humanizing people in our work, all children and all families. We have supported the Kidlit Against Anti-AAPI Racism Fundraiser (#KAAAR) and will also be hosting an SCBWI Celebrates Asian Voices panel during AAPI History Month on May 20th. A social for Asian creators will be held immediately following the event. We invite you to suggest your favorite authors, illustrators, & translators of the Asian diaspora for this panel by using #SCBWIVoices and encourage you to support Asian children’s literature creators. Our Equity and Inclusion Resource Library is open to the public. “Silence is often mistaken as acceptance.” Having conversations with your friends, family, and loved ones about protecting others in person and online is critical at times like these.  No group is a monolith and we all need each other to survive. We hope you will join us to #StopAAPIHate.

~ by April Powers