Toronto (September 17, 2019) – Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center (FSWC) condemns a recent spout of swastika graffiti that targeted political candidates in British Columbia, Quebec and New Brunswick.
Windows of the campaign office of NDP candidate Rachel Blaney in the BC riding of North Island-Powell River were vandalized by graffiti over the weekend, which included a large, red swastika. A local school was also vandalized by similar graffiti according to RCMP.
In Montreal, several signs belonging to Liberal candidate Soraya Marinez Ferrada and Conservative candidates Mariam Ishak and Michael Forian were defaced with swastikas. Police complaints have been filed.
Yesterday, the Liberal candidate for New Brunswick Southwest, Karen Ludwig, shared photos of her election sign defaced with swastikas, tweeting, “I will not be muzzled despite the intolerant and hateful behaviour of a few. Can you imagine what young people will think when they see this kind of behaviour in rural New Brunswick?”
“The swastika symbol is anti-democratic and goes against Canadian values of freedom, diversity and tolerance. This hateful graffiti has no place in our nation’s political discourse and no place in our communities,” said FSWC president and CEO Avi Benlolo.
In letters to the candidates, FSWC expressed its deep concern regarding the incidents, condemning the “chilling acts of vandalism in the strongest possible terms” and offering to bring its educational programs to local schools to further counter such acts.
Local police services have confirmed that the incidents are being investigated.