Asian group encounters harassment and language barrier with vaccination – CBS Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – When it comes to tracking down a COVID-19 vaccine, it has been difficult for everyone.

However, in some groups it is especially difficult for the Asian community in Pittsburgh.

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The Chinese American Organization is a hub for Asians in the region. It’s a community sticking together to find a vaccine and still fighting harassment.

“When we think about the difficulties and obstacles that have been created for us,” said Marian Lien, President of the OCA, “it feels pretty unfair, I have to say.”

Lien said her community was quietly fighting its way through the pandemic.

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“What I see is my hidden community, especially our elderly,” Lien said.

Lien said the community had been molested, ridiculed and humiliated. And the language barrier that many in the community have makes it difficult for them to find and plan a vaccine appointment.

“It’s very difficult for us to figure out where we fit in,” said Lien. “As an English second language learner and speaker when it comes to the elderly, it is ridiculous to ask them to navigate the system to get an appointment for these vaccines. I am sorry to say that. That way, I have to say that now we feel trapped. “

According to Lien, the Asian community is currently at the bottom of the list of ethnic groups being vaccinated. But Lien said it wasn’t out of fear of the vaccine, but simply not having any help where it’s needed.

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With the vaccine slowly but surely rolling out into communities, Lien says she is focused on helping her community get vaccinated. To do this, it will take help from allies.

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