Police are investigating after "disgusting" and "vile" racist signs for a "whites-only" mums and toddler group were posted in a Canadian city.
A spokesperson for the City of Coquitlam, in Vancouver, said the notices, which were posted over the weekend, promoted activities that "exclude certain groups based on their racial background" which is "the definition of racism".
It said the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) were investigating the offensive ads and city staff "will be immediately removing all notices posted on public property as they are made aware of them".
Signs call for segregation
Entitled, "Join us for Whites-only Moms & Tots," the shocking sign reads, "Are you looking for somewhere your children can play with others that look like them? Are they tired of being a minority in their schools or day cares?
"Escape 'forced' diversity and join other proud parents of European children as we create an atmosphere in which our kids feel like they belong. Invest in your child's sense of well being and racial identity by giving them the gift of time spent amongst their own people — because they deserve it."
A Reddit thread about the posters had 14,000 votes and attracted hundreds of comments before it was locked. "Holy sh*t, this would be bold for Mississippi — what are you doing Vancouver???" one social media user commented.
Authorities slam racist signs
Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West told local publication Victoria News that bylaw officers had searched for the signs but no more had been found. "This vile garbage isn't welcome in our community or anywhere else," he said.
Coquitlam Mayor Richard Stewart told Black Press Media that he had never come across something so offensive, except in history books. "It's just disgusting that anyone could voice that opinion, let alone hold that opinion," he said. "Ignorance can be fixed with education, in many cases, but you can't fix stupid."
In a statement, City of Coquitlam said it was "deeply committed to fostering an environment of equity, diversity and inclusion for all its residents".
"We are aware of the exclusionary and racist notices posted in our community, promoting activities that run counter to these principles," the authority said.
'No place in our city'
"We want to make it unequivocally clear that such practices and sentiments have no place in our city. Discrimination and prejudice have no place in our society, as they run contrary to the values that we uphold as a community."
It said the city "celebrates its rich diversity" and believed it grew stronger as a community by embracing "different backgrounds, cultures and experiences".
"We reject any attempt to create division or foster an environment where children are separated based on their racial or ethnic backgrounds," the statement added.
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