Neighbourhood watches use racial profiling - report

2014-11-30 13:15


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - Controversy has arisen over the use of racial profiling by certain neighbourhood watches, the Sunday Times reported.

The use of racial codes, apparently including describing black people as "bravo" and coloured people as "charlie", in social media alerts, is growing, Media Monitoring Africa director William Bird told the newspaper.

"It really wouldn't help identify a possible perpetrator. It would be like saying 'a white male in Norway'.

The newspaper said a website, Suburban Fear, was set up this week to report on civic organisations' Facebook's posts - labelling them: "the bastion of white middle class fear".

Screenshots of posts included on the website include those that refer to "bm,", meaning black males.

Other remarks about apparently suspicious people in various neighbourhoods, include reference to those who "don't look South African," "freekin nigerians," and "4 black males. (foreigners)".

One person posting refers to an incident when a family member gave an apparent robber "a good old fashioned hiding on his buttocks" and suggests others arm themselves "with a strap or a wooden spoon".

Another posted: "Why are you apologising for mentioning race...?"

Read more on:    crime  |  race

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Mkhwebane makes her mark

2016-10-23 00:00 publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.