In late February, visitors to Riverview Park in South Vancouver were shocked to see racist graffiti, including swastikas and the words "white power", spray-painted on eight trees.
These acts on the traditional territory of the Musqueam people were condemned by the City of Vancouver, the Vancouver park board, and Mayor Kennedy Stewart.
On Sunday (March 21), the Coalition Against Bigotry–Pacific is organizing a vigil in that very same park in Marpole.
It will held at Riverview Park (at 1751 West 66th Avenue at Angus Drive) at 7 p.m. to mark International Day for the Elimination Racial Discrimination.
"We must confront racism here on this day as we remember all those people who continue to die due to racism, particularly the six Asian women who have been murdered in Atlanta, as we mark this day to mark the anniversary of the Sharpeville Massacre," coalition founder Imtiaz Popat said in a news release.
He pointed out that it occurred in a park in a neighbourhood near Musqueam where "more and more diverse communities" are living.
"The Vancouver Police Department has not been able to do anything about the rise of racism in this city and keep asking for more money to fight racism," Popat said. "The provincial government keeps giving money to established organizations. However, grassroots organizations like ours continue to fight racism and bigotry with no funding at all."