Three of the area’s top elected officials are speaking out against racism following online comments now being investigated as a potential hate crime by the Terrace RCMP.
“In light of a recent online comment regarding First Nations people that generated considerable public reaction and media attention, we would like to emphasize our belief that racism has no place in our society, including online,” reads a statement posted to the District of Kitimat website this afternoon.
The statement, signed by Terrace mayor Carol Leclerc, Kitimat mayor Phil Germuth, and Regional District of Kitimat-Stikine board chair Stacey Tyers continues, “Our communities are diverse and we value the important and mutually respectful relationship we have with First Nations. The vast majority of citizens are respectful and inclusive of others, but unfortunately incidents still occur. We absolutely do not condone hurtful conduct, whether it is based on race or any other form of discrimination.”
The statement comes days after a screenshot of a Facebook comment briefly posted to a Terrace Standard online news article spread widely on social media, gathering national media attention and triggering an active investigation by the Terrace RCMP.
The comment, posted through the Facebook page of a user called Howie Boake Jan. 27, calls for an “open season” on First Nations and says that “the only good indian is a dead indian.”