Pride Fest mural vandalised

Talitha WolfeAlbany Advertiser

A mural painted by local artist Chad Marwick celebrating sexual and gender diversity has been defaced with homophobic graffiti.

The mural on the side of the Saltacious building on the corner of York Street and Serpentine Road, was painted a month ago by Marwick during Pride Fest.

The graffiti tagged across the majority of the mural reads: “Sodomite filth off our streets,” with what appears to be a swastika below.

The vandalism is believed to have occurred on Christmas Eve.

Albany Gay and Lesbian spokeswoman Sarah Schouten said it was “heartbreaking”.

“We’ve worked so hard over the past five years to create visibility, tolerance and acceptance in the community so it’s disappointing,” she said.

“But it’s not just defacing the mural, it’s quite horrible homophobic hate speech. People that are LGBTIQ will walk past and see that and it’s frightening and horrible, especially for young people in the community because they have a harder time.”

Ms Schouten said she expected some level of vandalism but this highlighted the discrimination the community faced.

“People in the LGBTIQ community deal with stuff like this within their own community and family and it’s not visible so this is making it visible, what happens to LGBTIQ people on a daily basis,” she said.

“It’s out there and people can see what we have to deal with.

“We’re not going to be intimidated by things like that”

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