One local Scarborough resident is speaking out, saying he was left shocked and angry on Tuesday morning after finding a swastika painted on the outside of a bus shelter near his home.
The swastika was spray-painted over a “Toronto For All” advertisement in the area of Surrey Avenue and Pharmacy Avenue, which prominently features a woman wearing a hijab and urges Torontonians to “accept without exceptions.”
Donald Parker noticed the vandalism while driving on Pharmacy Avenue and had one word to describe the graffiti: “Disgusting.”
“I don’t need Nazis or white supremacists anywhere, let alone my neighbourhood,” he told Global News.
Parker added that he had lived in the area for over 40 years and had never seen anything like the spray paint before.
“I’d like to see the graffiti removed right away,” he said. “Maybe there should be some type of patrol around here to keep an eye out for any more graffiti or vandalism.”
Parker said he called the TTC about the symbol and was referred to Astral Media, the company that manages the advertising space.
In a statement sent to Global News, Astral condemned the “hate content” painted on the shelter and said they had dispatched a crew to clean it.
Global News also reached out to the TTC, which said via a written statement that they are “horrified” that such a symbol would be displayed on a shelter used by their customers, and that the vandalism is “unacceptable.”
The TTC also pledged to give their full support to Toronto police if an investigation is launched.
Global News also asked the City of Toronto and Toronto Police Service for comment, with police saying as of Tuesday night that they have yet to launch an investigation.
“We can’t let them win by doing acts like this,” Parker said. “They’re just trying to intimidate people, whether it’s a new arrival, new immigrant, or the people that already live here.”