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Ontario Bar Blasted For ‘Black Olives Matter’ Sign

The owner apologized for trying to "make light of a very sensitive situation."
Ontario Bar Blasted For ‘Black Olives Matter’ Sign
Paramount Dimensions | Google Maps , Centre Ice Bar and Grill | Google Maps

An Ontario bar is facing criticism for its racially insensitive promotional sign. Centre Ice Bar and Grill in Sault Ste. Marie put up an outdoor ad for a new menu item last week, according to CTV News. It read, "Black Olives Matter. Try our new flatbread."

The signage quickly drew attention and backlash.

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The bar's owner issued an apology on the establishment's Facebook page, saying, "I was trying to make light of a very sensitive situation."

"I immediately took the sign down as soon as it was brought to my attention that the wording my be offensive to some," the owner wrote.

“I have supported our community for the last ten years and I hope you as a community continue to support my business.  I am not a racist and I will never be a racist and, again, I am truly sorry."

The African Canadian Caribbean Association of Northern Ontario (ACCANO) addressed the restaurant's advertisement with a statement of their own.

"[We] are extremely disheartened with the mockery of the Black Lives Matter movement," they wrote.

“Such actions threaten our assumed safety in public spaces and could embolden others to act in similar and much more harmful ways."

ACCANO acknowledged the support they received and thanked community members who stood with them to show their dismay.

The community of Sault Ste. Marie had a lot of messages for Centre Ice, one of them suggesting that their apology should go beyond words.

"Glad to see that the business recognized how inappropriate and offensive this was by making a public apology," reads one comment.

"However, I would like to see them take all the proceeds earned during the time in which they had this sign up and donate it to the BLM cause."

Canadians in every province participated in the Black Lives Matter movement this past June, with many marches and demonstrations occurring all over Ontario.

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