Lord Byng Secondary School. (Google Maps)

Lord Byng Secondary School. (Google Maps)

Human rights complaint filed against Vancouver School Board for handling of racist video

Critics say the school has only engaged in ‘damage control’

A human rights complaint has been filed against the Vancouver School Board for its handling of a racist video in which a student made a bomb threat against black students.

Marie Tate of the BC Community Alliance said the group filed the complaint this week after nearly a year of what it calls inadequate action by the school board in response to a video uploaded by a Lord Byng Secondary Student.

The video was uploaded to Facebook in November 2018, and showed a white student using racial slurs and issuing a bomb threat.

Tate said the school board initially suspended the student for three days, and only increased it to five weeks about a month later.

The student was also transferred out of the school, but Tate said multiple black students have also left Lord Byng as a result of how officials handled the issue.

In an email, the school board said it could not discuss the students affected because of privacy reasons, but that staff are addressing the issue with a “balance of discipline and restorative steps.”

The board said they’ve “worked with the community” to educate students on anti-racism, provide counselling and “individualized support plans,” and create a committee on diversity and inclusion.

“We are committed to fostering safe and caring schools that promote mutual respect and safe, inclusive, equitable, and welcoming school environments,” an email said.

Tate described much of the response as “damage control.”

Lord Byng held assemblies about discrimination following the video, but Tate said parents of the affected students have told her the school has done little to support them directly.

“This was a bomb threat. It’s big deal and it wasn’t handled as such.”

Tate believed that after the school district’s response to the video, as well as prior incidents like alleged racist graffiti, filing a human rights complaint was the group’s only option.

She said the alliance wants to bring the focus onto the affected students, and away from the one who made the threat.

“We don’t want to be people that are complaining. We want to help the Vancouver School Board have better policies so the next time something like this happens, they are prepared,” she said.

The school board said it has not yet received formal notification of the complaint.

READ MORE: Parents want more action after racist video posted by Vancouver high school student

READ MORE: ‘We still did not get answers’: Vancouver parents demand expulsion after student’s racist video


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A nurse performs a test on a patient at a drive-in COVID-19 clinic in Montreal, on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
36 new cases of COVID-19, one death in Interior Health

The number of active cases in the region is at 366

Over the last few years, over 300 hectares have been treated at the city’s southern boundary for wildfire risk reduction. Photo courtesy BC Government.
Wildfire mitigation projects reducing risk around city boundaries

Over the last few years, there has been over 300 hectares of… Continue reading

Pictured is the new gallery space at 1401 5th Street North in Cranbrook. Artists from across the Kootenays are invited to take part in our upcoming exhibit, ‘Kootenay’s Best’.
Cranbrook Arts announces premiere exhibit at 1401 Art Space

Cranbrook Arts is inviting artists from across the Kootenays to submit a proposal for their upcoming exhibit, ‘Kootenay’s Best’

Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison. File photo
COMMON’S CORNER: Challenging the government on vaccine availability and more

The first of a quarterly column from Kootenay-Columbia MP Rob Morrison

Pictured above: Jason Hawke, Jen Ross and Brenna Baker.
Not Alone campaign gets fundraising boost from Pink Shirt Day

A fundraising campaign for a walk-in health and wellness centre for youth… Continue reading

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry head for the B.C. legislature press theatre to give a daily update on the COVID-19 pandemic, April 6, 2020. (B.C. government)
B.C. nears 300,000 COVID-19 vaccinations, essential workers next

564 new cases, four deaths, no new outbreaks Thursday

Kelowna General Hospital (File photo)
Second death reported in Kelowna General Hospital COVID-19 outbreak

A total of seven cases have been identified at the hospital: six patients and one staff

Municipal Affairs Minister Josie Osborne speaks in the B.C. legislature, March 4, 2021. (Hansard TV)
B.C. Liberals, NDP sing in harmony on local election reforms

Bill regulates paid canvassers, allows people in condo buildings

(National Emergency Management Agency)
No tsunami risk to B.C. from powerful New Zealand earthquake: officials

An 8.1 magnitude earthquake shook the north of New Zealand Thursday morning

(AP Photo/Richard Vogel, File)
Pandemic stress, isolation key factors as to why Canadians turned to cannabis, alcohol

Study found that isolation played key role in Canadians’ substance use

Grand Forks’ Gary Smith stands in front of his Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster float. Photo: Submitted
Grand Forks’ Flying Spaghetti Monster leader still boiling over driver’s licence photo

Gary Smith, head of the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster of B.C., said he has since spoken to lawyers

A Cowichan Valley mom is wondering why masks haven’t been mandated for elementary schools. (Metro Creative photo)
B.C. mom frustrated by lack of mask mandate for elementary students

“Do we want to wait until we end up like Fraser Health?”

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Most Read