Past Webinar

Racism, community, art and social change

Understanding community responses to racism in Aotearoa

Bev Tso Hong, Grace Wong, Grace Gassin,

We explore the compounding issues of racism and how it is experienced among different communities in Aotearoa. This webinar focuses on The Aotearoa Poster Competition project which came out of the April 2020 COVID-19 Level Four lockdown. We shine a light on responses to the increasing displays of anti-Chinese racism in social media as well as racist behaviour towards Chinese people living in Aotearoa New Zealand.

We also give voice to the appetite for understanding migrant communities in a Te Tiriti o Waitangi context. How do we consider the relationships between tangata whenua and tangata tiriti from different community perspectives?


Aotearoa Poster – The promotional posters and resources on the competition website aim to empower people and provide Kiwis with strategies for how to stand up and respond when they see other people targeted by anti-racist behaviour. The winning posters are free to download for non-commercial use.

Te Papa Collection – Aotearoa Poster Competition winners:

Kotahitanga United Through Creativity – – A collection of artworks to spark crucial conversations against racism and inspire conversation, inclusivity and unity. Creative Waikato is the driving force behind the initiative which aims to engage, inform, and connect with people from across different cultures and communities.

Human Rights Commission ReportRacism and Xenophobia Experiences in Aotearoa New Zealand during COVID-19: A Focus on Chinese and Asian Communities

Human Rights CommissionResponding to Racism Resource page – Anti-racism tips, tools and guidance aiming to give us confidence to help eliminate racism. This advice has been gathered from multiple domestic and international sources and includes a list of other campaigns and initiatives from around Aotearoa and the world.

Tauiwi Tautoko – A programme run by the Open Collective offering tools, community and courage to participate in online conversations that may involve racism, hate speech and other harmful beliefs. It is for all tauiwi (non-Māori) to support those who are targets of racism in online spaces.

Tauiwi Tautoko resources page by ActionStation – Read, listen and watch these resources to help you change hearts and minds, one conversation at a time.

About the Presenters

Bev Tso Hong

Bev is a social policy researcher whose work has spanned a wide range of social sector portfolios. In recent years, she has been interested in approaches that strengthen and affirm positive societal values and wellbeing including a focus on the role of arts and culture in society, sense of belonging, and bridging across diverse perspectives. In 2020, she co-led an anti-racism/pro-diversity art-based community initiative which spotlighted the diversity of Chinese communities in Aotearoa ( Bev is actively involved in Chinese community initiatives in Aotearoa and a Principal researcher at Kōtātā Insight Limited.

Grace Wong

Grace’s interests are health promotion, public health, Asian health and Te Tiriti o Waitangi. She was a public health nurse, researcher & policy analyst for Action on Smoking and Health NZ, and lectures at Auckland University of Technology. She sits on several public health NGO Boards and the MoH Health Workforce Advisory Board. Her PhD explored how Asian families protect their children from smoking in the context of migration and culture in Aotearoa.

Grace Gassin

Grace is Curator Asian New Zealand Histories at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. Her wide-ranging research interests encompass the historical and contemporary experiences of Asian diaspora communities in Aotearoa New Zealand and Australia, racism and anti-racism, and issues of national belonging/exclusion in Aotearoa. Grace takes a community-engaged, social justice approach to her work within and outside the museum; in the context of the Covid-19, this has seen her engaged in research and collection work highlighting under-represented community responses to the pandemic.

This Webinar was held

11am NZ time
12 Apr
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