A chocolate shop and café in San Francisco’s Chinatown is giving employees lessons in kung fu to help empower them against theft and crime in the neighborhood, according to a report.
Mindy Fong, owner of Jade Chocolates Teahouse and Café, told the San Francisco Chronicle that she decided to hold kung fu classes for employees beginning in late March after the area experienced a string of thefts.
“Every day, there’s something,” Fong said. “I’ve seen people being chased in the street because they’ve stolen something from the jewelry shops or camera shops.”
Hate crimes against people of Asian descent spiked 567% in San Francisco in 2021, with 60 attacks, the paper reported, citing city police statistics.
While fewer incidents have been reported in Chinatown this year, crime is still at a major concern for residents and business owners.
Jade Chocolates’ executive chef Scott McTaggert told the paper that for the last six years he’s been practicing a style of Chinese kung fu called Wing Tsun, which focuses on self-defense. He offered employees the chance to train at San Francisco WingTsun in Chinatown.
“I will do everything I can do to make our employees feel safer and more empowered so they can live their lives without being afraid,” McTaggert said.
Fong said that she hopes that employees won’t ever find themselves in a position where they have to use self-defense.
“But if the day comes, they’ll be prepared,” she said.