PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – Business was reportedly down 40 percent for Asian restaurants in Pittsburgh before Gov. Tom Wolf asked restaurants to move to take-out only.

Pittsburgh Commission on Human Relations released a statement about a rise in discrimination against people of Asian descent it attributes to “unfounded fear and misinformation surrounding COVID-19.”

The commission says around the world and country it has seen anti-Asian rhetoric, harassment, vandalism and assault.

Locally,the commission says it became aware of people seeking medical treatment after they’d had contact with people of Asian descent.

It also says the Organization of Chinese Americans reported a 40 percent decrease in business at Asian restaurants before nonessential businesses were asked to close.

Before the coronavirus outbreak, the University of Pittsburgh said the coronavirus was being used to “spew hateful rhetoric” at international students.

A statement from the Pittsburgh Commission on Human Relations said in part:

You can support our international community through the following actions: buy food , supplies, or a gift card from a locally-owned Asian business; volunteer with a local non-profit serving vulnerable groups; reach out virtually to ensure the well-being of neighbors, friends, and colleagues; speak out when you hear racist and xenophobic comments; encourage reporting of discriminatory and hateful actions- even if PghCHR is not able to investigate these claims, we will always provide resources for agencies that may be able to help.