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Indigenous centre hit by bigots says city 'not racist'

Other businesses on Curzon st were also hit by the vandals.
Other businesses on Curzon st were also hit by the vandals. Contributed

UPDATE: Staff at an indigenous health care centre that was a victim of a racist graffiti attack say Toowoomba is not a racist city.

Vandals wrote "slaves till the grave" in red paint on a sign outside Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement on Monday night.

The slogan has been linked to white supremacist groups in the United States and refers to the enslavement of African Americans.

Corporate services manager Sonia Martin said the graffiti upset staff at the service but that they didn't believe Toowoomba had a big problem with racism.

"We're like a family and we work here eight hours of the day.

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"Whatever happens here affects all our staff.

"We have nearly 50 staff and 85 per cent are indigenous.

"We offer a great service for the whole community, and then this happens.

"And it cost us to have it removed.

Vandals wrote 'slaves till the grave' in red paint at Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement. Photo Contributed
Vandals wrote 'slaves till the grave' in red paint at Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement. Photo Contributed Contributed

"Luckily we have a great manager who cleaned it straight off and we were straight back to business.

"Goolburri is here for everyone and we didn't think anything like that would happen."

She said staff wanted to move on from the incident and get on with the job of helping people.

Toowoomba residents reacted with disgust to news of the graffiti.

Police are investigating the incident.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hours a day.

The graffiti has been condemned by Toowoomba residents.
The graffiti has been condemned by Toowoomba residents. Contributed

EARLIER: Toowoomba residents have reacted with disgust to news that an Aboriginal health centre has been targeted with white supremacist graffiti.

Vandals wrote "slaves till the grave" in red paint on a sign outside Goolburri Aboriginal Health Advancement.

The slogan has been linked to white supremacist groups in the United States and refers to the enslavement of African Americans.

Sonia Martin posted the photos on a popular crime webpage and said the vandalism was disappointing given the great service that Goolburri provides to the community.

Others were also quick to condemn the actions.

Dan Derksen said: "Totally disgusting, I can't believe someone would do this."

Stacy Sollitt said: "Let's hope they're found soon. This kind of c**p isn't welcome."

Paulie Lacey said: "So disgusted. Whoever done it needs some good education and an a*** whooping."

Ashley Collard said he had seen similar graffiti in other parts of Toowoomba.

"Seen that the same spray paint had also been used to spray '666' on the private school sign on James St just up the road," he said.

Ashlea McNellee said the vandals seemed to be confused.

"Pretty sure they are just uneducated kids who may have Aboriginals and American negros mixed up."

Nat Caldwell said: "It's disgusting, racist, disrespectful, and vandalistic behaviour."

Goolburri has since cleaned the graffiti from their sign.

The Chronicle has contacted the service for comment.

Other businesses, including some on Curzon St, were also hit by the vandals.

A police spokesman said the incident happened overnight on Monday and was reported on Tuesday.

Police are investigating the incident.

Anyone with information which could assist with this matter should contact Crime Stoppers anonymously via 1800 333 000 or crimestoppers.com.au 24hrs a day.

Topics:  editors picks graffiti toowoomba


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