THUNDER BAY – Crime Report = Thunder Bay Police, Thunder Bay Fire Rescue and Superior EMS were on scene for an incident on Sunday morning on Simpson Street. Details are not complete yet in this developing story.
Through the city on Saturday night, there were twenty-nine Quality of Life calls which included 18 alcohol related calls.
As well Police dealt with three assaults and one sexual assault. There was one Weapons Offence.
Cooler weather seemed to keep crime at a lower level than usual.
There is a disturbing new instance of what appears to be racially directed graffiti showing up in the downtown Fort William neighbourhood.
Power boxes in Kam River Park now sport what appears to be an anti-Aboriginal message.
Thunder Bay has the Respect campaign and the Anti-Racism Committee that seek to make some positive changes in our city.
What is Hate Crime?
“Hate crime refers to criminal offences that are motivated by hate towards an identifiable group. The incident may target race, national or ethnic origin, language, colour, religion, sex, age, mental or physical disability, sexual orientation or any other similar factor, such as profession or political beliefs. These types of offences are unique in that they not only affect those who may be specifically targets by the perpetrator, but they often indirectly impact entire communities.”
Statistics Canada – Hate Crime in Canada, 2006
Hate can be expressed through the following means: Speech, literature, graffiti, internet, posters, brochures, pamphlets, assault, property damage or property defacing.
Violent examples of expressions of hate are:
1. assaulting someone because of their religion
2. assaulting someone because of the colour of their skin
3. assaulting someone because of their sexual orientation
4. assaulting someone because of their ethnic origin
5. assaulting someone because of their gender
6. desecrating a grave site
7. defacing a place of worship
The most common type of hate crime incidences are based on Racism.
What is Racism?
• Prejudice that one’s race is superior to other races.
• Discrimination or abusive behaviour and action towards one or more races.
• The idea that beliefs or doctrines that are different among races mean the superiority of some races.
• A policy or a system that promotes racism.
• Intolerance of one or more races.
Examples of Hate
There are many ways that people experience racism or discrimination in their everyday lives. Some common examples include:
• Vandalism of properties or symbols associated with other races such as mosques, synagogues, and grave sites.
• Singling out an individual for greater scrutiny for no other reason other than their race in places such as shopping malls or at border crossing for reasons of safety, security, public safety.
• Refusing to hire an individual because to their race.
• Refusing to serve an individual in a restaurant or hotel because of their race.
• Being called racist names or making jokes about people because of their race.
• Racial profiling – using race as a basis of detaining or arresting an individual or subjecting them to (unwarranted) investigation
Consider the following scenarios. Have you experienced something similar?
a) A new student arrives at your school in clothing that is traditional to his/her heritage or country. Other students begin to tease, make mean comments and exclude the new student. How does this make you as a bystander/observer feel? What do you do?
b) Your class has a supply teacher. This teacher has an accent and people start snickering and making rude comments. How does this make you feel? What do you do?
c) You are picking up a chocolate bar at the corner shop and you hear a negative (derogatory) comment about a particular group of people (for example, a religious group, an ethnic group, etc.) How does this make you feel? What do you do?
d) Your friend uses language that perpetuates discrimination. For example, they keep talking about stereotypical images, even when referring to themselves; (“I’m having such a ‘blond’ day today”). How does this make you feel? What do you do?
The Ontario Human Rights Code provides for equal rights and opportunities and recognizes the dignity and worth of every person in Ontario. It is against the law to discriminate against someone or harass them because of their sexual orientation.
A person cannon be treated unequally or subjected to harassment or violence because he or she is gay, lesbian, heterosexual or bisexual.
Examples of homophobia:
a) A gay, lesbian or transgendered person is a target of an assault.
b) Homophobic jokes
c) A person being treated differently because of their sexual orientation
Taken from No to Hate.ca