Muslim Woman Faces Islamophobic, Verbal Harassment at Bus Stop in Vancouver

muslim woman

A 22-year-old Muslim woman wearing a hijab was verbally attacked while waiting for the bus in Vancouver, Canada, last week.

What happened: Shafira Vidyamaharani was at a bus stop on Main Street at around 11 a.m. on June 11 when the incident occurred, according to CBC.

 

  • An unidentified man approached her and asked about her attire and where she was from. She moved away from him and refused to respond.
  • “I noticed that that upset him so he complained to another person who was also waiting in line about me, and I could tell that he was calling me names and slurs,” Vidyamaharani told CTV News.
  • She said the man physically threatened her, saying he would “kick that thing off” her head.
  • Vidyamaharani started recording him after that. The man can be heard saying about her phone, “I’ll kick that right out of your f*cking hand, b*tch. Get out of my face.”
  • He also can be heard saying anti-Muslim comments, such as, “Why they allow people like you in this country…you don’t even know what you’re doing.”
  • The incident ended once he boarded his bus.

Other details: The Vancouver police shared in a statement that they are now investigating the case but have yet to make an arrest.

  • Sgt. Steve Addison told CTV News that the authorities applauded Vidyamaharani for “coming forward and immediately reporting the incident to VPD.” Due to her actions, the police could “immediately launch an investigation.”
  • Although she has encountered racism before, Vidyamaharani said this incident was distressing since the man could have physically attacked her.
  • She shared with CTV News that if a similar incident were to occur in the future, she would “love people to just jump in. It doesn’t even have to directly address someone who is harassing the person, it could also just be you know directly talking to the victim and deflecting the situation from the violence.”

The Vancouver police are urging anyone with information about the incident to call their non-emergency line at (604) 717-3321.

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Featured Image via CBC (left), NEWS 1130 (right)

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