Racist posters promoting 'alt-right' alarm Toronto residents
Police investigate after posters went up directing people to 'pro-European' news sources
A Toronto resident who says she was horrified to see a racist poster on a pole while walking to her children's school on Monday is blaming it partly on Donald Trump's victory in the U.S. presidential election last week.
The posters, of which there at least a half dozen, showed up on Monday in and around Stan Wadlow Park in east Toronto near Woodbine and Cosburn avenues.
They begin "Hey, white person," and invite readers to "join the alt-right." The posters also list websites that promise to provide news from a "pro-European" perspective.
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"It is racist. All cultures should be respected. That's just the way it is," said Penny Harker. "I think they're up because … of the Trump thing. I think he's filled everybody's heads with this on immigration."
Coun. Janet Davis responded Monday afternoon with a tweet of her own condemning the posters.
Police officers and city workers were on the scene Monday removing the posters, a task made more difficult because some were glued, rather than simply taped, to the utility poles.
Rinaldo Walcott, director of the Women and Gender Studies Institute at the University of Toronto, said in an email to CBC Toronto that he felt the timing of the posters was no accident.
"Of course the American election has emboldened white nationalist groups in Toronto," he wrote. "Only time will tell how far out of the shadows they will emerge."
Police said they have yet to determine if the posters will be investigated as a hate crime.