Vancouver officials 'extremely disappointed' by racist graffiti at famed Chinatown gate
City contractors began removing the vandalism on Wednesday morning
Vancouver's Chinese-Canadian community has been targeted in yet another racist incident linked to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Earlier this week, the lions at the famed Millennium Gate in Chinatown were defaced with graffiti promoting anti-Asian sentiments in connection with the novel coronavirus.
In a written statement, a spokesperson for the city said officials are "extremely disappointed and saddened" by the vandalism.
"Racism, xenophobia and hate speech have no place in Vancouver and the city is appalled by the recent increase in anti-Asian discrimination that has occurred during the current pandemic," the statement says.
City contractors with Goodbye Graffiti began removing the defacement Wednesday morning. According to the city, the company offers free removal of any hateful or racist graffiti from private property.
Vancouver is providing the Chinatown Business Improvement Association with funding to support extra security services during the pandemic, the statement says.
Recent weeks have seen an uptick in reports of anti-Asian racism in B.C.
In a press conference Wednesday, Premier John Horgan addressed that trend, saying "Hate has no place in British Columbia."