Hamilton residents walk against hate as city sees uptick in hate-related incidents


Published April 30, 2022 at 4:28 pm

Residents in Binbrook organized a community walk today (Apr. 30) to express their displeasure with hate symbols in Hamilton.

The walk was held from 12-2 p.m. at the Fairgrounds Community Park in an effort to increase signatures on the Hamilton Anti-Racism Resource Centre’s (HARRC) petition.

The petition was created following the release of Hamilton Police Service’s annual report on hate/bias incidents and criminal offences on Apr. 28.

The report showed a stark 35 per cent increase in hate/bias incidents involving members of the Black, Jewish, Islamic and 2S&LGBTQIA communities in Hamilton in 2021.

As it says on their website, the HARRC’s petition outlines the need for “legislation that prevents the promotion of hate symbols such as Nazi symbols, homophobic signs, confederate flags, etc.”

The petition indirectly references a home in the Binbrook neighbourhood that was displaying the confederate flag. Many community members expressed shock and confusion over seeing the flag. Media reports say the flag was still visible on the household on Wednesday (Apr. 27).

Hamilton mayor Fred Eisenberger addressed the community’s displeasure in a Tweet on Wednesday.

“I will move another Motion in Council to request that the federal and provincial governments act swiftly to take action to ban symbols like this, as we should not have this flag and other racist and hateful flags flying in our communities,” the tweet read.

This comes after Eisenberger said on Friday (Apr. 29) that he would be “absolutely supportive” of the reinstallation of the John A. Macdonald statue in Gore Park. The statue was torn down last summer in the midst of community unrest surrounding the discovery of 215 unmarked graves at a residential school site.

A counsel from the Indigenous advisory firm, First Peoples Group, strongly recommends not reinstalling the statue.

Photo courtesy of Hamilton Community Legal Clinic

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