HATE SPEECH: Graffiti outside the University Centre for Rural Health building does not reflect Lismore values.
HATE SPEECH: Graffiti outside the University Centre for Rural Health building does not reflect Lismore values.

This white supremacist vandalism does not reflect Lismore

WHEN staff at the University Centre for Rural Health in Lismore returned from their Easter break they were confronted with an office coated in hateful, racist grafitti:

'White power', 'Coon lovers', and swastikas, were scrawled in red across the rear of the Uralba Street building.

 

While staff, some of whom identify as Aboriginal or Jewish, were 'distressed', they wanted the community to know, their faith in Lismore remains unwavering.

Acting Director of the University Centre for Rural Health Dr Michael Douglas, who also works tirelessly as a refugee advocate at Sanctuary Northern Rivers, said "It's not the Lismore I know."

"Lismore is a welcoming, rich and diverse community and I have been involved in the refugee program here and I know the African community," Mr Douglas said.

"To see a racial slur is really contrary to the vast majority of the Lismore community. I think we are dealing with a minority, aberrant view.

"If this is targeted to the university itself, the university has a responsibility to speak out as a moral compass.

"That voice is expressed very strongly within this community that we live in, and while I think it is distressing, I don't think we need to be too concerned about our values.

"Our stated values at the university is that everybody should be able to reach their potential. We have 700 students who come here every year and we give a lot of emphasis to equity."

"Staff are distressed," Dr Douglas said.

"We are attending to staff needs for those who may have been affected by it," he said.

The university notified police early Tuesday morning and the graffiti was cleaned off soon after.



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