Family speaks out about racism after people throw garbage at grandmothers and kids in Surrey park
A video capturing an altercation at a Surrey park, and viewed on social media thousands of times, is being condemned as racist and family members of the targets are questioning how the RCMP handled the incident.
Sahiba Sangha said when her grandmother came home from Aspen Park last Wednesday she knew something was off, because the senior's clothing appeared to be a little dirty. She asked her grandmother what happened.
"She was like, ‘This couple came out and they started swearing at us and then they brought litter out from the garbage and threw it on us and the kids.’"
Sangha decided to investigate. She went to the park where her and other grandmothers often spent time with their grandkids. She discovered video from someone who wishes to remain anonymous -- and so she posted it on her Instagram page. She said its been viewed thousands of times.
A woman's voice can be heard saying "the next time I see garbage I will flip more s***t than just garbage ... I don't give a s*** if it's not yours."
The concerned granddaughter believes this is racism in action, because of other comments that can be heard that tell the women to speak in English because they are in Canada.
Nine-year-old Gurlal Gill was at the park with the grandmothers.
"We felt like people were treating us like garbage," he said.
He said he still feels scared to go to the park and worries that the couple might come back and harass him again.
"If they come again, that would be, like, kind of crazy," Gill said. "So, I think they should get banned from the park."
Sangha said when police were called, the grandmothers who were targeted couldn't explain in English what had happened. She added that the grandchildren with them weren't listened to when they tried to explain what had happened, and a neighbour who stopped to translate was brushed aside by police. She's questioning if the officer did enough to hear the women's version of events. In many South Asian families children are often relied upon to translate for elders.
The officer picked up the garbage, and so too did the women and the kids. Sangha said she asked her grandmother why.
"She said ‘We were told if we didn't we'd be fined.’ And I was like, ‘But did you litter?’ and they said, ‘No, the couple took the garbage out and threw it on us."
CTV reached out to Surrey RCMP for comment. Mounties have not yet responded.
Sangha, who says she is speaking out for those who don't speak English, is condemning the behaviour. She says the toughest part is the impact on the kids.
"It's sad and its upsetting. I feel sad for the little kids who had to see this."