Anonymous helpers paint over racial slurs scrawled on Saskatoon Chinese restaurant

Over the weekend, someone spray-painted racial slurs on the outside of the Taste of Excellence Chinese restaurant in Saskatoon. A few days, two anonymous people came by the restaurant to help paint them over.

WARNING: This story contains a photo showing racial slurs

Two people volunteered to paint over racial slurs that had been scrawled on the outside of the Broadway Avenue business. (Guy Quenneville/CBC)

She doesn't know their names; they didn't leave them behind.

But Nina Fu, a server whose parents own Saskatoon's Taste of Excellence Chinese restaurant, says it was "really nice" of two anonymous people to show up at the Broadway Avenue business and voluntarily paint over the racial slurs that had been scrawled on the outside of the restaurant a couple of days earlier.

"They just came in and said sorry to us and then asked, 'Can we help?'" said Fu. "They covered it up for us."

'I was just shocked'

Another employee of the restaurant noticed derogatory language directed at Asian people spray-painted on the outside of the restaurant on Friday or Saturday, Fu said.

Nina Fu is a server at Taste of Excellence. Her parents have owned the restaurant for five years. This is the first instance of racist graffiti they've faced. (Nina Fu)

Fu's parents have owned Taste of Excellence for five years. This was the first instance of racially tinged graffiti they'd ever encountered at the location. 

"I was just shocked. I don't know why those people put those words on the wall. I don't know where we did wrong. So I was shocked, yeah," said Fu.

Chamil Bandara, who is originally from Sri Lanka and lives in the apartment attached to the restaurant, was also taken aback.

"Seriously, I mean, yeah, we're living in Canada but the thing is, we'd like to believe that we are diverse and we accept everybody, but there's still some sort of a hidden racism out there," said Bandara.

"When you go out there and you see some things like this, it just kinda opens your eyes to what's actually going on."

Saskatoon police have yet to receive a report about the incident, the service said. 

'They just helped'

On Monday, a man and a woman, both in their early 20s, came to the restaurant, said Fu.

They did not confess to painting the graffiti; rather, she said, they felt bad about still seeing it up.

So on Tuesday, they came back and covered it up with broad strokes of white paint.

"They just helped. So that's really nice," said Fu.

These words, since painted over, showed up on the outside wall of Saskatoon's Taste of Excellence over the weekend. (Nina Fu)

One act of kindness was rewarded with another, she added.

"Then they came in for lunch, and we gave them free drinks or free food."

Fu had meant to ask for their names, but was too busy serving.

"But when I meet them [again], I will notice them."


Guy Quenneville

Reporter at CBC Ottawa, originally from Cornwall, Ont.

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