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Tuesday 13, June

Black children’s community group compared to KKK

A Berlin-based community group trying to create a safe space for black children faces online threats.

Photo: Empoca

Tuesday, 13 June

Black children’s community group compared to KKK

A Berlin-based group that organises nature camps and excursions for Black children has faced threats and backlash, being forced to tighten up the security around their facilities.

Since 2018, Empoca has organised outdoor holiday camps for black youth, run by a team of black volunteers and coordinators as an attempt to create a safe space for children of colour. In a recent interview with Spiegel, Empoca CEO Anthony Owosekun spoke about the program and the negative experiences black children face in Germany today. He emphasised the importance of black safe spaces, but it seems many people took all this the wrong way.

Owosekun was met with waves of abuse from online readers, calling Empoca a segregationist camp and comparing it to the KKK. Former boss of BILD Julian Reichelt wrote: “Holiday camps by skin colour, and the media writes about it as if that were perfectly normal. Craziness.”.

Just a few hours after the interview was published, Owosekun was inundated with hate messages and even explicit threats across social media. He commented “The negative reactions and hate comments showed how important it is to have safe spaces for black children,”. In response to the online backlash, Empoca has ramped up security at its camps.