Horwath, Trudeau, Mayor Eisenberger show solidarity with Hamilton Muslims


Published July 14, 2021 at 12:58 am


Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath and Hamilton Mayor Fred Eisenberger have each expressed solidarity with the Muslim community amid a hate crime investigation.

A mother and daughter allegedly received death threats and had Islamophobic slurs targeting the Muslim community hurled at them after an interaction in the parking lot of the Ancaster Meadowlands on Monday, Hamilton police say. A suspect is in custody and has a court date on Wednesday.

The incident occurred just 36 days after four members of a Muslim family in London, Ont., were killed and a fifth, a nine-year-old boy, was injured and orphaned when they were run down by the driver of a pick-up truck.

Horwath, who represents the Hamilton Centre riding, was the first of the three to post in support. Speaking as Ontario’s official Opposition leader, she reaffirmed her call from last month for the province to create a plan to target Islamophobia.

“My heart is with the women who endured this hateful attack, their family and Muslim communities across (Hamilton) and Ontario,” she said. “Everyone deserves to walk down the street in peace, without fear. Urgent government action to fight Islamophobia is long overdue & desperately needed

Last late month, the province gave a combined $300,000 in funding to two Muslim organizations in late June. The announcement did not mention anti-racism or anti-Islamophobia education.

A tweet was posted to Trudeau’s account at 7:16 p.m.

“I’m deeply disturbed by reports of an Islamophobic attack on Muslim women in Hamilton yesterday — and I strongly condemn this violent, hateful, and abhorrent behaviour,” Trudeau wrote. “It has no place in our country or any of our communities. We will continue to stand together and take action.”

Following the PM’s tweet, Eisenberger was the first elected leader in Hamilton to post a statement on social media. 

“Hate has no place in (Hamilton),” Eisenberger wrote. “Our heart goes out to the two Muslim women who were victims of a hate-based crime that occurred on July 12th in Ancaster. Everyone in our community deserves to feel safe, respected and valued.

“I want to express our most adamant objection to this blatant display of hate and Islamophobia in our city. I remain committed to a Hamilton for all.

About 3.2 per cent of Canada’s population is Muslim. An estimated 50,000 Muslims reside in Hamilton. 

The name of the 40-year-old male who has been charged in connection with the incident was not released by the Hamilton Police Service. He will appear in court on Wednesday (July 14) and faces three counts of uttering threats, two counts of assault with a weapon, dangerous operation of a vehicle, and failure to comply with his probation.

insauga's Editorial Standards and Policies advertising