Victoria police chief calls for partial removal of BIPOC fresco

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Victoria Police Chief Del Manak has called for the partial removal of a mural in Bastion Square. The mural, which says “More justice, more peace” was painted by a group of black, indigenous and color artists (BIPOC) weeks ago. The main message itself is not the problem for Manak. It was a little more subtle that led to his request for deletion. “There is a mural that was painted with all the best intentions, unfortunately it had an acronym that was part of the mural that was insulting to members of the Victoria Police Department,” Manak said. The acronym was located in the letter “S” and read ACAB, which stands for All Cops Are Bastards. “I think anytime there is something disrespectful that doesn’t speak to what exists here locally for our police department, I think it’s very insulting to our officers,” Manak said. Mural manager Charity Williams said she received an email from the city asking for its removal on Thursday. Williams said she was insulted by the request. “To me personally it feels like oppression, it’s like we continually ask and demand more justice and more peace and they keep putting us down and it doesn’t matter what we feel,” Williams said. Williams said the city initially praised her for the mural, but things have clearly changed. “To me it’s like the city of Victoria is saying yes, of course here is a mural but anything that is important or anything that points the finger at us is not allowed,” said Williams. Manak said he plans to sort things out. “Later today, I’m going to be meeting with black community leaders to fill in some of these gaps and having this discussion and further discussion can better engage communities of color.” Manak said. As of Thursday afternoon, the slogan had not been deleted. A peaceful demonstration took place Thursday on the Place du Bastion to support the mural.



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