WARNING – DISTRESSING CONTENT: A dark-skinned doll with a rope around its neck found outside an Aboriginal organisation in Victoria has left the local community feeling sickened and unsafe.
Melbourne man Shannon Hood found the doll outside the Aborigines Advancement League in Thornbury and took a photo of the disturbing find before reporting it to the league’s caretaker.
He said he found the doll on February 8, but held off sharing the image straight away because of how uneasy it made him feel.
“I found it very disturbing and sickening,” he told news.com.au.
“I was going to put the photo on social media (at the time) but I reneged because I knew how it made me feel and I didn’t want to upset my friends and family by posting it.”
Mr Hood shared the photo on his Facebook page, which was then shared on Twitter and quickly went viral.
Twitter user Tareen Onus-Williams said the display is a terrifying example of racism.
“White supremacy is alive and they are condoning the killing of our children with this symbolism,” she wrote in her Tweet.
Mr Hood said finding the doll made him feel concerned about walking down the street with his six-month-old son.
“This is the stuff that Aboriginal people have to put up with on a daily basis,” he said.
“To be putting a brown baby doll in a noose, I thought it was just a monstrous act.”
Appalling and horrific. We have so far to go in this country.
— kathmayer 💫 (@kathmayer) April 10, 2019
This is horrific. I hope whomever found it is OK and supported. I also hope that no children saw it.
— Bec McLellan (@BecMcLellan) April 9, 2019
Twitter users were disgusted by the image, labelling it “horrific” and “sick”, with one woman saying “we have so far to go in this country”.
A spokesperson for Victoria Police told Yahoo News Australia they were aware of the incident.
“While no formal reports have been made to police at this time, we acknowledge some people may be particularly offended by this incident and strongly support everyone’s right to feel safe and secure within their community,” the spokesperson said in a statement.
“Victoria Police does not tolerate violence and takes all crime seriously, including that which is motivated by prejudice, racism or discrimination.
“Under sections 24 and 25 of the Racial and Religious Tolerance Act, it is an offence to threaten or incite hatred towards a person or group based on race or religion.”
Anyone with information is encouraged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report online at www.crimestoppersvic.com.au.
Yahoo News Australia has reached out to the Aborigines Advancement League for comment.
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