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Racism outcry after one of Canada's biggest cities says COVID-19 vaccine appointments 'now available for Black and other racialized populations'

Photo by Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Numerous cries of racism ensued after Hamilton, Ontario — one of Canada's biggest citiesannounced over the weekend that COVID-19 vaccine appointments are "now available for Black and other racialized populations/people of colour."

"COVID-19 vaccine appointments are now available for Black and other racialized populations/people of colour ages 18+ who live in postal codes L9C, L8W, L8L, L8N and L9K at the COVID-19 vaccine clinic at FIRSTONTARIO CENTRE, Friday to Sunday this coming week," the announcement read.

Interestingly, the city — which is about an hour southwest of Toronto and an hour west of Niagara Falls, New York — added in a subsequent tweet that "proof of address must be shown when arriving for an appointment if eligibility is due to a hot spot address."

What are the details?

The CBC reported that the plan came about after the group advising public health pressured the agency to "prioritize racialized, disabled and low-income residents."

And even though less than a quarter of the city's total population consists of people of color, the station said members of racialized communities account for nearly half of all COVID-19 cases in Hamilton.

What was the reaction?

Numerous folks on Twitter reacted with mockery and cries of racism in regard to the announcement:

  • "How about for my Proof of race? What do I need to bring in to prove my ethic purity?" one commenter asked. "Can we get some officially mandated armbands out to the people so we can know what race they are at a quick glance?"
  • "I am mixed race... mother white, father black... I am light skinned ... do I qualify as black so I can get the life saving jab??" another user wondered.
  • "What about proof of racialization?" another commenter inquired. "Wouldn't want any black-passing whites slipping through the cracks ya know... I propose a test."
  • "LOL but yet you [New Democratic Party] Liberals are against showing ID for Election voting!" another user cracked. "Can't have it both ways you clowns."
  • "Imagine this same tweet but with 'white' instead of 'black' and the outrage it would cause," another commenter noted.
  • "Ah, here's that #SystemicRacism in action," another user observed. "Must be nice to have the privilege to know your white supremacy will always... wait... what? Damn — it pays better and better every day to be non-white in Canada. Tell me more about my 'privilege' leftists!"
  • "How is this even remotely fair?" another commenter asked. "I live in L9C, over 40 and compromised immune system but I can't get an appointment!!! Ridiculous."
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