A video appearing to show a white man engaged in a heated exchange with a Muslim man and his family at the Jack Layton Ferry Terminal in Toronto is sparking outrage on social media.
Toronto police confirmed to Global News on Wednesday the incident took place Monday. They said officers responded to a call about an assault at the terminal around 6:30 p.m.
The encounter, which has received over 88,000 views on Facebook, begins as a man with blonde hair, wearing what appears to a burgundy Hawaiian shirt, walking towards another man and his family.
The exchange appears to start as a man with a beard makes a statement about the other man’s breath as they come face-to-face.
“Wow. Your breath smells like alcohol,” he said.
The man in the Hawaiian shirt responds back with expletives.
“I don’t give a f—. You don’t tell me what to do in my province,” he said. “You don’t ask me a f—— question. It’s my f—— province.”
The four-minute long video then goes on to show the man in a Hawaiian shirt shoving a member of the other man’s family.
“He’s drunk man. Let him go. You can smell him,” a woman’s voice said in the background.
Another woman is then heard on the phone speaking to police.
“This man is abusing my brother. He is touching him. He is pushing him,” she said.
The verbal exchange continues until security personnel from the terminal intervenes.
Police said the investigation is ongoing.
Some of the comments on Facebook praised the man and his family for showing restraint.
“Really appreciate the patience of this family,” Waqar Ali wrote.
“There were little kids and everything. Such ignorance. Apparently he was drunk so what you do really,” Seehan Em commented.
“Hope they arrest this guy. No family should ever go through that,” Ariba Haider wrote.
In a statement to Global News on Wednesday, the National Council of Canadian Muslims said they were aware of the incident and called the language used by the man “abhorrent and unacceptable.”
“We are currently attempting to reach out to the family to make sure they receive any support they may need, including the children who were unfortunately present during this incident,” the statement said.
“Unfortunately, we are continuing to see reports of these kinds of hostile incidents directed against individuals who are Muslim or who are perceived to be Muslim. It is therefore important that we continue to stand united as communities against intolerance and hate.”