A tolerance campaigner who participates in Wrocław’s Brave Kids Festival has escaped harm after an attempt was made to set her house on fire.
Magdalena Sawicka, who lives in Wałbrzych, has been coordinating her city’s integration project for 5 years. She conducts workshops on tolerance and promotes integration activities.
According to Gazeta Wyborcza, on Sunday evening Magda and her daughter were in their apartment when they suddenly felt the smell of burning. After rushing to see what had happened, Magda saw that her door was covered in flames. Fortunately one of her neighbours then rushed to the scene and put out the flames using a fire extinguisher.
A card stuck to the top of the door contained the word “brudas”, a derogatory term used against people of colour in Poland.
The fire brigade have concluded that the source of the fire was a flammable liquid that had been sprayed onto Magda’s door. The police are currently investigating the case.
When asked about the incident, Magda revealed it wasn’t the first time that her and her family have been targeted as a result of her work. She claims that a neighbour accused her of bringing diseases to Poland (due to Magda hosting foreign guests, mainly participants of festivals). On top of that, her daughter was allegedly called a “Muslim terrorist” at school.
Despite all the threats and the hassle Magda’s work is causing her, she is determined to continue her campaign for tolerance.
“Now I feel a rebellion inside me. I decided to officially explain what happened and not to be afraid. Not everyone has to like me, but nobody has the right to make me and the people I work with feel threatened.”
“Nobody will change the feeling that what I do makes sense .”
The Centre for the Monitoring of Racism and Xenophobia are offering a 1000zł reward for information on the arsonist.