RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — The Virginia Department of Wildlife Resources is launching a new initiative after a black hunter discovered racist graffiti on public land.
The racist messages were carved on a tree and spray-painted on concrete in the western part of Virginia last month.
The department says this was a brazen attempt to intimidate minority hunters and anglers.
“He, or anyone else, should never have to be greeted by such discriminatory messages while engaging in his passion for the outdoors,” the department said in a Facebook post on Tuesday. “Virginia’s sportsmen and women expect and deserve better.”
The department plans to implement strategic initiatives “that specifically address outreach to currently underrepresented populations and create welcoming environments.”
“This has been the tradition of Virginia’s hunters, anglers, and other outdoor enthusiasts and needs continuing emphasis as we move forward,” the department said. “As always, the outdoors are better together.”