Racism Rears Its Ugly Head in Lane Cove

    The Lane Cove Community is a generous, kind hearted, caring community. Whenever a Lane Cove resident suffers a set back, ITC is inundated with kind offers of help.  We are also a community with 20% of  our residents coming from countries where English is not their first language.

    Ethnic Diversity

    Our ethnic diversity continues to grow year on year as evidenced by the reported ancestries of the Lane Cove population between 2011 Census and 2016 Census.

    • Chinese (+1,365 persons)
    • English (+1,164 persons)
    • Irish (+587 persons)
    • Indian (+471 persons)

    Racism in Lane Cove


    In July 2019 Dr Anita Alexander, a Longueville local, who works in North Sydney told the North Shore Times that she has experienced  “blatant” racism since moving to the North Shore 14 years ago.  Dr Alexander, who is of Indian descent, said she has not experienced racism like this anywhere else.  You can read the North Shore Times Article here.

    Three weeks ago ITC was contacted by a Lane Cove Local who was shocked to hear racist comments in the Lane Cove Village.  As the local was walking past a group of schoolboys she was surprised to be called a “Ching Chong”.  The local who reported this incident to us  said:

    “I was so shocked by this. In my 20 years of living on the north shore, I have not encountered this. I was born in Australia, however my heritage is Chinese.”

    Today we were contacted by another resident who was very upset by the racial abuse she encountered in the Lane Cove Market Square Carpark.  The local parked her car next to a man sitting on a motorbike.  The man started shouting racial abuse at her and her daughter in an aggressive manner.  Initially she tried to ignore the abuse, however the man was upsetting her daughter.

    The man was asked to stop his behaviour and he replied that he “‘couldn’t care less if he was frightening her daughter”.  He continued to aggressively shout racial abuse saying  “go back to where you came from”, and that her “people were taking over Lane Cove”   He then revved his motorbike very loudly on multiple occasions as he continued to yell.

    The local was shocked as she has been living in Lane Cove for over 10 years and had never before been subjected to such racial abuse and aggression.  The incident was reported to the police.

    Bias Crime

    The NSW Police Website has a section on Bias Crime.  Bias crime is a criminal offence motivated against persons, associates of persons, property or society that is motivated, in whole or in part, by an offender’s bias against an individual’s or group’s actual or perceived; race, religion, ethnic/national origin, sex/gender, gender identity, age, disability status, sexual orientation or homeless status.

    A bias incident is an incident committed against persons, associates of persons, property or society that is motivated, in whole or in part, by an offender’s bias against an individual’s or group’s actual or perceived; race, religion, ethnic/national origin, gender, gender identity, age, disability status, sexual orientation or  homeless status but does not constitute a criminal offence.

    Section 93C of the Crimes Act makes it an offence for a person to “use or threaten unlawful violence towards another and whose conduct is such as would cause a person of reasonable firmness present at the scene to fear for his or her personal safety.”

    If you see anyone being racially abused or attacked, and you fear for their safety, call the police.

    Lane Cove Refugee Welcome Zone

    Lane Cove prides itself on being an accepting society.  In 2017 Lane Cove Council even signed a Refugee Welcome Zone Pledge.

    A Refugee Welcome Zone is a Local Government Area which has made a commitment in spirit to welcoming men, women and children who have moved to Australia from countries that have suffered war, civil conflict, religious persecution, political persecution or other unfortunate circumstances. The pledge states that we as a community in Lane Cove will welcome these people into our community, upholding their human rights, demonstrating compassion and enhancing cultural and religious diversity in the community. Many community groups and local residents in Lane Cove volunteer a considerable amount of time and donate a substantial amount of money towards supporting these people who are now making Australia their home.

    By signing this pledge, Lane Cove Council was sending a clear message to members of our community that our community will support people who are now making Australia their home and that we welcome them to participate in our community. It will also recognise the effort many residents in our community have undertaken to work with people in our community and other parts of Sydney who are now making Australia their home.

    The type of behaviour above does not sit well with the Lane Cove most people know and love.

    Have you seen any incidents like this in Lane Cove? Have you been the victim of racial abuse in Lane Cove? What can we do to stamp this out?

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