Several incidents of hate-related graffiti have been reported to the Edmonton Police Service during the novel coronavirus pandemic.
An EPS spokesperson said a couple of these hateful messages have been “directed towards the Asian community since March 17.”
Graffiti was painted on a fence and on a tarp under a small ravine bridge that referenced the coronavirus and China, Scott Pattison said.
He said, from his understanding, the graffiti was quickly removed.
Police are asking members of the public to report any potential hate-related incidents to EPS immediately.
“There is zero tolerance for hate-related behaviour in our community, regardless if we’re in the middle of a pandemic or not,” Pattison stressed.
“These are certainly challenging times for our society, though it should be a time when we’re all pulling together as a community, and not looking to divide.”
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Questions about COVID-19? Here are some things you need to know:
Health officials caution against all international travel. Returning travellers are legally obligated to self-isolate for 14 days, beginning March 26, in case they develop symptoms and to prevent spreading the virus to others. Some provinces and territories have also implemented additional recommendations or enforcement measures to ensure those returning to the area self-isolate.
Symptoms can include fever, cough and difficulty breathing — very similar to a cold or flu. Some people can develop a more severe illness. People most at risk of this include older adults and people with severe chronic medical conditions like heart, lung or kidney disease. If you develop symptoms, contact public health authorities.
To prevent the virus from spreading, experts recommend frequent handwashing and coughing into your sleeve. They also recommend minimizing contact with others, staying home as much as possible and maintaining a distance of two metres from other people if you go out.