As we lift the stories of LGBTQ AAPIs who have experienced profiling based on race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, and more, we ask ourselves to challenge our investments in policing and reimagine alternative forms of safety. These stories are from community members who are Southeast Asian, trans, and Muslim or perceived to be Muslim.

Sasha

#RedefineSecurity: Sasha, 26 (NQAPIA)

“The last time I flew to New York City, I was stopped by TSA, which is a regular occurrence. This time though, for reasons I can’t explain, I was led away from the security checkpoint and into a room: a tiny storage closet with blocked out windows. The only sign in the room was a […]

Sahar Shafqat

#RedefineSecurity: Sahar Shafqat, 44 (Washington DC)

“When I was on my way to India with Sapna, my wife, we received boarding passes with a quadruple S (SSSS) security code. I had received that code before, so we knew: it’s going to be one of those security experiences. A TSA agent opened up a security line just for us. Each of us needed to […]

Kevin Lam

#RedefineSecurity: Kevin Lam, 26 (QAPA Boston & NQAPIA)

“In 2013, as Khmer New Year in Providence, RI was wrapping up, my co-worker was stopped by police. My co-worker and I were the main transportation for young people we worked with to get home after the event. When I saw that my co-worker had been stopped, I made a u-turn to check-in on her […]

Jyoti Chand

#RedefineSecurity: Jyoti Chand, 33 (Stop LAPD Spying Coalition)

“I am a coordinating team member of Stop LAPD Spying Coalition, an anti-state violence and anti-police spying coalition. In 2014, my apartment was broken into. My laptop, which I use for my community organizing work, and my paper notes, to document the use of human and electronic surveillance by the police, were stolen. I felt […]

police car lights

#RedefineSecurity: Fa’afetai Alofa

“I remember the moment the undercover cop pulled out his badge and told me I was going to be arrested. I experienced a mix of things; shock, self disgust, disbelief, shame, and an overwhelming numbness. As a Samoan trans woman, at the age of 23, just a few months after completing my bachelors degree, I […]

August Guang

#RedefineSecurity: August Guang, 26 (PRYSM & NQAPIA)

“I was 19 when the TSA started using full body scanners in 2010. I found myself suddenly under their microscope. Until then I had gone through with relative ease – though my suitcase was often searched because of my mom’s import business – because as an East Asian U.S. citizen I didn’t fit the profile of […]

Red and black pattern

#RedefineSecurity: Alina Bee, 26 (Satrang LA)

“Abbu was always frustrated by my shalwared prancing. He said they made me look unprofessional and no one would take me seriously in the world. Much to his chagrin, I’ve just about made a uniform of them and the TSA takes me very seriously. One particular instance sticks out and it happened to be when […]