Racist Flyers Are Appearing In Kitchener Mailboxes & The Mayor Called It 'Repulsive'
The hate crime unit is investigating.
Residents in the Kitchener-Waterloo area have been shocked in recent days. Waterloo Regional Police Service (WRPS) are now investigating reports of discriminatory letters being left in mailboxes across the region. The Kitchener-Waterloo racist letters show a stock photo of a mixed-race couple followed by racist rhetoric.
The images have been circulating on social media so much so that Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic has come out and condemned it as a hate crime.
According to the WRPS in a statement, officers received reports from residents in the community about the letters in the mail.
The message shows an image of an interracial couple and makes discriminatory statements about such couples and their children.
"We are aware of offensive flyers with racist text circulating throughout Waterloo Region. Investigators with our General Detectives and Hate Crime units are continuing to investigate," reads a tweet from WRPS.
The image has been shared onto social media, garnering significant reaction.
"This is repulsive and disgusting. There is no place for this kind of hateful and hurtful propaganda... It makes me sad and angry that this kind of anti-black racism is not only prevalent, but is being widely shared," said Mayor Vrbanovic in a Facebook post later shared on Twitter.
Vrbanovic added he has asked that the incidents be investigated as a possible hate crime.
Meanwhile, Waterloo's own mayor Dave Jaworsky told CBC the flyers are the work of "uninformed cowards."
Meanwhile, University of Waterloo graduate Chanda Prescod-Weinstein, Assistant Professor of Physics and Astronomy at the University of New Hampshire, also shared the image.
"This racist stuff is being put in the mail boxes of people who live in Kitchener-Waterloo, which is the community I spent most of my time in while I got my PhD at the University of Waterloo, Canada," said Prescod-Weinstein in a tweet.
There have been reports of the letter being found in mailboxes of Ezra Street residences by Wilfred Laurier University, per CBC.
Canada Post told Narcity in an emailed statement: "The flyers appear to have been placed inside a stamped opaque envelope and sent as letter mail by being dropped into a street letter box.
"We are concerned that someone has used the postal system to send this material and will work with local law enforcement to support any investigation."
WRPS spokeswoman Cherri Greeno told the Toronto Star the force's hate crime unit is investigating.
Police are asking anyone who received the papers to call them at 519-570-9777 or leave an anonymous tip with Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477.
They also urge residents not to touch the letter in order to possibly save forensic evidence like fingerprints.
The flyers are appearing at a time of currently heightened racial tensions in Ontario, across Canada, and worldwide.