Victoria mural sponsor says anti-police acronym inappropriate, but fuels debate
VICTORIA -- The group that sponsored a mural that has been called disrespectful by Victoria's police chief says an anti-police acronym that is part of the work is offensive.
The African Heritage Association of Vancouver Island says it cannot condone the appearance in the mural of the acronym ACAB, which is commonly meant to mean “All Cops Are Bad.”
Victoria police Chief Del Manak has said the city-sponsored mural on justice issues disrespects members of the police department.
A statement from the African Heritage Association says it supports the spirit of the “More Justice, More Peace” mural in the city's Bastion Square, but calls the acronym inappropriate.
The association says it is proud of the relationships it has developed with the police department, the City of Victoria and the regional district over the past 16 years and looks forward to continuing conversations about systemic racism and making change.
City official Bill Eisenhauer says the city plans to meet with the heritage association and the mural artists to discuss the acronym.
The mural, which the association received a city arts grant to complete, is the work of 17 artists and is meant to raise awareness of injustices suffered by Black people, Indigenous people and others.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 4, 2020.