“We are building bridges not walls.”
That’s the message tonight from dozens of protestors who gathered at New Westminster City Hall for an anti-hate rally.
This, after Neo-Nazi posters were plastered throughout the city earlier this week.
New Westminster MLA and organizer of the protest Judy Darcy says as soon as she heard about the flyers she knew she had to do something.
“It’s really about the community coming together and saying we completely reject the hatred and bigotry that were shown in those pro-Nazi posters that went up on a local church on the weekend.”
“But it’s more importantly about saying we stand for equality and diversity and respect, that’s what our community is all about. Bigotry in all of its forms is unacceptable to us,” she says.
For Darcy, the issue is personal.
That’s because her own father was Russian-born, but fought in the French Army and was captured at Dunkirk before he was sent to a POW camp in northern Germany.
To survive, he hid his Jewish identity.
“They did not learn that he was a Jew when he was in the prisoner of war camp and so he lived to tell the story, but he lost family members in the Holocaust.”
Darcy says it wasn’t until her father was 93 that he told her the truth of why their family names were changed, wanting to protect them.
Police say Neo-Nazi posters were found earlier this week.
“They had swastikas on them, a portrait of Adolf Hitler and some inflammatory written on there as well,” says Sergeant Jeff Scott.
Scott says police have no suspect yet.
“At this point, we’re still looking at video surveillance in the area as we go through that, we may be able to identify who was involved or any vehicles involved.”
He says the department is working with the B.C. hate crimes unit.
In Abbotsford, residents found KKK flyers on their doorsteps or lawn citing hateful literature, first last October and then again last week.
With files from Emily Lazatin and Michelle Morton