Antisemitic graffiti reported at a Jewish summer camp on a B.C. island
Earlier this month, a caretaker at Jewish summer camp spotted “crude images and swastikas” according to a CBC News report.
Camp Miriam, one of the few Jewish overnight summer camps in the B.C. region, located on Gabriola Island, an island between the mainland and Vancouver Island, in close proximity to Nanaimo, was the target in the hate-motivated graffiti incident.
After discovering the graffiti, one of the camp’s committee members, Kelley Korbin confirmed it has been reported to the RCMP. The Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver is also aware of the troubling incident. The two groups, along with the hate crimes unit of the Vancouver Police department are examing the incident.
Ezra Shanken, the CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver told NEWS 1130 that “it’s almost like no corner of the globe is immune. We’re talking about a camp sitting on an island in the Strait that has not so many people on it.”
Korbin described the camp on priding itself on being “a progressive overnight camp where children learn about Jewish history, leadership and the environment.”
While there has been continued news coverage of antisemitic incidents in Canada, the United States and around the world, “this is the first time in (her) memory that Camp Miriam has been a direct recipient of an attack,” Korbin said.
The incident came to light after a tweet by Sheila Malcolmson, the MLA for Nanaimo, and Gabriola Island was shared.
The camp is a member of Habonim Dror, a Labour Zionist movement, one of the many Jewish organizations within the Kibbutz Movement. Habonim Dror has camps in 15 countries, and two camps in Canada alone.
Swastikas are generally the most common form of antisemitic graffiti in the Jewish diaspora. They are antisemitic to their core, and always have the interest of hatred against the Jewish community, regardless of their sect or affiliation.
Jewish summer camps are unlikely targets for antisemitic attacks, however, and this brings to light yet another type of Jewish institution that will need much more attention with regards to security as the unfortunate worldwide wave of antisemitism continues to spread.
The camp subsequently painted over the graffiti and are reviewing the organization’s security protocol.
British Columbia has recorded its seventh case of coronavirus, according to CTV News. This brings the total number of cases to 11 in Canada.
The patient is reportedly under isolation at their home in the Fraser Health region of BC. The patient is around 40-years-old and had close contact with the patient who was the sixth case of coronavirus in the province.
The sixth case in British Columbia was revealed on Thursday. The patient, who is in their 30s, also lives in the Fraser Health region. They recently arrived in Canada from Iran.
The BC government has said that they are attempting to reach out to everyone who has been in contact with the two known patients, whilst keeping their privacy intact.
Having said this, the number of coronavirus patients outside of the Wuhan region in China is continuing to rise, even spreading to countries as far away as Europe—potentially necessitating tougher containment measures.
Vancouver Island Extinction Rebellion appeared outside the home of British Columbia Premier John Horgan claiming they would be attempting a citizen’s arrest on the premier.
Protestors said they were attempting to prevent Horgan’s attendance of the provincial budget announcement at the BC legislature Tuesday.
RCMP vehicles were on scene, as well as members of Horgan’s security personnel.
Protestors have been spotted holding signs outside of Horgan’s home, with others laying down across Horgan’s residence.
The premier was seen arriving at his home at around 8 a.m. PST, getting in a verbal argument with protestors there to arrest him.
According to CTV News, the RCMP created an “exclusion zone” and threatened to arrest anyone who remained on the premise. Protestors were then arrested, while others remained outside the street.
Horgan reportedly left his home with his security detail at 8:30 a.m.
The action outside the premier’s home Tuesday comes after numerous displays by the eco group that have disrupted Canada.
On Feb. 11, hundreds of activists blocked the entrances to the B.C. legislature as the government was set to deliver its throne speech.
The Extinction Rebellion demonstration were in solidarity with anti-pipeline Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs.
“The events of the past week on Wet’suwet’en territories have been an extreme demonstration of colonial violence, approved by the Trudeau and Horgan governments in contravention of Wet’suwet’en, Canadian and international law,” said a statement released Monday night by the group.
“We join the Wet’suwet’en in urging the Horgan government to stop privileging corporate interests over indigenous sovereign rights and the integrity of the Yintah.”
Extinction Rebellion has garnered negative attention recently, as the group has participated in railway blockades that have inconvenienced the travel of an estimated 90,000 VIA Rail travellers and countless CN Rail cargo shipments.
A review of complaints has been ordered by the Federal Court of Appeal for a Department of Environment workplace in Nanaimo, British Columbia. The conditions of the workplace were so bad that a bulletproof vest was being taken to work by a manager because she feared being shot by another employee according to Blacklock’s Reporter.
Justice Mary Gleason wrote, “The Public Sector Labour Relations and Employment Board did not address the issue of whether the applicant was motivated by a genuine fear. It was precisely its role to consider whether the applicant had a genuine fear for her safety.”
The manager at the office was Angela Walker, and she was fired for the harassment of a male employee at the office in 2015. An appeal by Walker was dismissed by the Employee Board in 2019. Walker said that she “protected the environment and made it safer for everyone” at the office and felt like “nothing” when the dismissal occurred.
The Board wrote, “Every witness who testified spoke to a poisoned atmosphere at the Coastal District team and the Nanaimo office.” One of the office employees mentioned that the behaviour by management was “akin to a form of water torture.”
During the Board hearings, Walker was called “highly emotional.” Walker said that she “carried a map showing the route to the hospital” while wearing her bulletproof vest because one of the employees scared her so much.
According to Walker, the male employee said that she “should be burned at the stake” and would call her names like “the devil,” “Miss Piggy” and a “f—king bitch.” Other employees at the office said that they never heard this language being used by the man.
The Board’s reason for Walker’s firing was an “ongoing pattern of behaviour” towards the man. Some of the things she did to the man included revoking his security pass, making him go to Quebec for a management seminar and keeping an eye on his Access to Information records.
The board described the man, Ken Russell, as “highly credible” and “a very sympathetic witness.” In fact, Russell was so highly thought of by fellow employees that he was given a Queen’s Diamond Jubilee award.
The Board wrote, “The harassment allegations for which she was disciplined taken individually are very minor, but taken as a package, their impact on Mr. Russell was in my opinion akin to a form of water torture.”
“Each minor incident ate away at Mr. Russell and further alienated him from his coworkers and his team.”
According to the board, Russell was seen searching through ceiling tiles to see if security cameras had been placed there by his manager.
“This was a case of an ongoing pattern of behaviour demonstrated by a manager against one of her employees,” said the Board.
Police have arrested 33 anti-pipeline activists who have blockaded the Port of Vancouver over the development of a pipeline in Northern British Columbia, according to the CBC.
Protestors blocked Hastings and Clark so that no workers or vehicles could get through.
The police were enforcing an injunction that granted the officers to clear the site. This follows 21 arrests made by the police over the weekend who were blocking workers from accessing the site.
Before the police made these arrests, they made it clear over a loudspeaker that they had an injunction and would arrest protestors who continued to break it.
After this, police began to remove the barriers that the protestors had constructed. The port is now open to workers and vehicles.
Demonstrators blocked two other port entrances in Vancouver. They also blocked the Delta Port, where fourteen protestors were arrested by the police.
The protest remained broadly peaceful, although some bottles were thrown into the crowd. The protestors are allowed to continue, so long that they remain on the sidewalk.
There have been numerous protests across Canada in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en protestors. In Belleville, Ontario, for example, protestors blocked the rail lines forcing all trains and freights between Ottawa, Toronto, and Montreal to be cancelled.
The police also have an injunction to clear protestors from the tracks in Belleville.