Graffiti spray-painted on Scarborough Muslim school 'disturbing,' Tory says
Codi Wilson, CP24.com
Published Tuesday, May 22, 2018 6:37AM EDT
Last Updated Tuesday, May 22, 2018 10:46AM EDT
Police are investigating after anti-Muslim graffiti was spray-painted on the outside of a Scarborough Muslim school over the weekend.
The graffiti, which was found on an exterior wall of Wali ul Asr- East Campus on Torrance Road, was first spotted by a local city councillor on Monday night.
“The anti-Muslim graffiti on Wali ul Asr is the kind of hateful act & language that has absolutely no place in Toronto. This hatred is unacceptable at any time but it is disturbing someone would choose to do this during Ramadan,” Mayor John Tory said in a tweet Tuesday.
Scarborough Centre Coun. Glenn De Baeremaeker said he noticed the graffiti while he was out for a bike ride in the neighbourhood on Monday night.
“The first thing I thought was I can’t let the kids see this tomorrow morning. It’s disgusting, it’s not who we are, and I can’t imagine a five-year-old or 10-year-old innocent child coming to school and parents having to walk past this type of hurtful, racist graffiti. Not acceptable,” De Baeremaeker told CP24 at the school on Tuesday.
He said Coun. Jim Karygiannis later got involved and asked city staff to come to the school to remove the graffiti.
“They made a commitment that this graffiti, this racist graffiti, will be removed before kids get to school this morning,” he added.
De Baeremaeker said the disturbing comments do not represent the views of the vast majority of people in the community.
"There may have been one person who came here under the cover of darkness to write these hurtful things but the other hundred of us who live here love everybody, accept everybody, celebrate with everybody,” he said.
“I want the parents who bring their kids here to know that all of the neighbours here are against this type of hatred and of course they are welcome here just like everybody else is from every country in the world.”
This is not the first time derogatory graffiti has turned up at the building and Karygiannis said he and De Baeremaeker are going to push to get funding for a security camera for the school.
"It’s a real disgrace," Karygiannis told CP24. "We live in a city where diversity is our strength, that’s our motto. For somebody to do this, it gets me very upset."
Toronto police say they have launched a mischief to property investigation in connection with the incident.
Commenting on the incident Tuesday, Ontario Liberal Leader Kathleen Wynne said Ontarians "stand against Islamophobia and all forms of hate."
"This act is especially disturbing during the holy month of Ramadan. We must stand united against anyone who seeks to divide us," Wynne said in a tweet.