A UCP cabinet minister has shared details about an alleged attack on her daughter that occurred on a downtown Calgary street that she says was motivated by hate.
Rajan Sawhney, Alberta’s minister for community and social services and representative of the riding of Calgary-Northeast, posted on social media about the incident, which she says left her and her daughter “shaken.”
In the account, Sawhney says her 25-year-old daughter was attacked on Stephen Avenue on Friday, near her place of work.
“She was grabbed, pushed, sworn at and chased down the sidewalk. My daughter ran and stood next to two strangers. The attacker followed and kept screaming at her and pushed her again,” Sawhney wrote in her post.
She added that she has always been concerned about the increase in attacks on women based on their race and while her daughter was not physically harmed, it left a deep impact.
“I am outraged, saddened and disgusted at the same time, as I have been with every single attack on racialized women that has occurred in recent months.”
Sawhney said the incident has also emboldened her to push for more protections for all women, no matter their background, to “walk in public without fear of being attacked.”
“A whole lot of society response is required, because as I have said before, if we don’t speak up for those who are oppressed, often we will be next.”
‘HE WAS GOING TO GRAB ME’
Raman, Sawhney’s daughter spoke to CTV News Friday night and shared her account of the disturbing events along Stephen Avenue. She says that, at first, she didn’t think anything of it, but it soon turned into a very scary situation.
“I had coffee with a friend and all of a sudden, I saw a man near the Bay and he started walking very fast and very aggressively in my direction. I thought maybe he was trying to cross the street,” she said. “As I walked past the pillar, I saw him come up behind me and in that moment, I knew he was going to grab me or attack me. I actually thought I was going to get kidnapped.”
Then Raman said the man grabbed her arm and started to become physically violent with her.
“(He) started swearing and saying some very mean and hurtful things – profanity – and I got away from him and I quickly ran to where the intersection was. (I) saw a couple people standing there so I moved behind them just to create space, but that didn’t stop him, he continued to chase me.”
At that point, she went inside a nail salon and immediately called police.
Both Rajan and Raman say they gave statements to officers but, so far, no arrests have been made.
Meanwhile, Premier Jason Kenney also shared his thoughts on the situation, saying the attack was “profoundly wrong.”
“Hate crimes like this are a vile attack not only on innocent individuals, but on the cohesion and safety of our entire society,” he wrote on Facebook.
“We must all work together to stamp out this hate. We can’t be disinterested bystanders when people are assaulted in our communities, in broad daylight.”
My daughter was the victim of hate fuelled violence today. pic.twitter.com/OrxRtFFOJ2
— Rajan Sawhney (@RajanJSaw) June 26, 2021