By Gina Martinez
After an LIRR Murray Hill Station sign was vandalized with anti-Asian graffiti, MTA Police have installed a security camera at the station.
Community leaders and elected officials were outraged after discovering a LIRR Murray Hill Station sign a week ago covered with racist statements like “Asians all on welfare,” “Chinese losers town” and “Whites built Flushing!” written all over it.
In response to the racist graffiti Assemblyman Ron Kim (D-Flushing) wrote a letter to the MTA Police, the 109th Precinct and city DOT asking for a review of all available footage relating to the incidents and requested a thorough and immediate investigation of any evidence identifying the perpetrator. MTA responded promptly by installing cameras at the station. Kim thanked the MTA Police for addressing community concerns and making security upgrades at the Station.
“My fellow elected officials and I are hopeful that this will stem the recent tide of repulsive vandalism there, and make the area safer for all residents,” he said. “We are also grateful to our local community leaders for their unceasing efforts to successfully resolve this issue, as well as the MTA and Gov. Cuomo for their outreach to our community. If there are still security problems that need to be addressed even after the installation of this camera, my pledge to secure additional funding still stands.”
Last week Korean community leaders, nearby business owners and elected officials joined Kim to denounce the acts, which they made said in no way represented the ideology of the diverse and tolerant character of their neighborhood.
Kim said the coward who committed these terrible acts must be found.
“I am proud to live in and represent one of the most diverse constituencies in the country, where there is no place for this kind of behavior,” he said. “It goes against the very character of our neighborhoods, and my office will do all that we can in working with local law enforcement to keep our communities safe, united, and free of hate.”
Christine Colligan, co-president of the Korean-American Parents Association of Greater New York, said the group has requested footage from the surveillance camera be sent to the MTA Police Chief, and that a MTA Police team continually patrol the Murray Hill station.
“Hate Speech Vandalism is a criminal act and is extremely dangerous and violation of federal, states and city law,” she said. “The citizens of Flushing will not allow such criminal acts in our neighborhood. Taxpayers and citizens have a right to be safe and protected from such hateful crimes. We should not only erase the graffiti but also catch the perpetrator.”
Reach Gina Martinez by e-mail at gmart