Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks with Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson at the start of a meeting with Mayors of Canada’s largest cities in Ottawa on February 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks with Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson at the start of a meeting with Mayors of Canada’s largest cities in Ottawa on February 6, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld

Trudeau ‘appalled’ by homophobic graffiti outside Ottawa mayor’s home

Jim Watson, who became Ottawa’s longest-serving mayor on Saturday, came out as a gay man in August 2019

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says he’s “appalled” that homophobic graffiti was painted on the road in front of Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson’s home over the weekend.

Trudeau says in a tweet that there’s no place for this kind of “ignorance and inexcusable hate” in Canada.

On Sunday, one of Watson’s neighbours noticed a three-word, homophobic slur against the mayor painted on the road outside his home.

The neighbour called the Ottawa Police Service, which has engaged its hate crimes unit to investigate the incident.

The city power-washed the graffiti off the road.

Watson, who became Ottawa’s longest-serving mayor on Saturday, came out as a gay man in August 2019.

“There is no place for this ignorance and inexcusable hate in this city — or anywhere in our country,” Trudeau tweeted Monday.

“Jim, know that Canadians across the country are standing with you.”

In a statement Sunday, Watson’s office said: “The mayor is disappointed that someone would spend any time and effort to attack someone’s sexual orientation and deface public property.

“He is grateful for his neighbour’s vigilance and the quick response by the (Ottawa Police Service) as well as the City’s Works department, who arrived to clean up mid-afternoon.”

Ottawa police Chief Peter Sloly confirmed the police are “investigating an incident of hate graffiti” outside Watson’s home.

“Our service has no tolerance for hate crimes of any kind,” Sloly tweeted. “Our hate crimes unit has been engaged and this act, and all acts of hate, will be fully investigated.”

The Canadian Press


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