Concord’s mayor Jim Bouley says the city isn’t going to tolerate hate crime against its refugee residents. On Sunday morning, a racist message written in black permanent marker appeared on the house of a Somali family in the city’s South End. Bouley stopped by NHPR to talk about this latest incident, which was nearly identical to graffiti that appeared on three refugee homes last fall.
Mayor Jim Bouley says he’s angry about the graffiti because it doesn’t represent the Concord he’s come to know. He says the city has seen seen tremendous benefits from becoming more diverse. Concord is home to about a thousand resettled refugees from countries like Bhutan and Somalia.
“My son is fourteen years old and he’s spent the last three years at Rundlett Junior High, and he has a much better experience a much more enriched educational experience by just the sheer fact that we are a community of many, and we embrace all.”
The Mayor also says that the city has gone to great lengths to build bridges between Concord neighborhoods and refugees, especially in light of racist messages that appeared on three South End homes last September.
“We had the multicultural festival each year, we have soccer games that were encouraged for all in the community to come and attend. This isn’t an incident where we rallied for one day and forgot about it, so to see these words, um, it’s absolutely disturbing.”
The Concord Police department is asking for the public’s help to catch the person or people behind the incidents. Tips can be reporting to the Concord Regional Crimeline. According to Mayor Bouley, residents are behind the anonymous donations police are offering as a reward.