NDP candidate who apologized for Auschwitz remarks takes leave from board

Alex Johnstone is running in the riding of Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas

    HAMILTON — A federal NDP candidate who apologized for making a crude reference to Auschwitz has temporarily stepped down from her role as vice-chairwoman of the Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board.

    Alex Johnstone, who is running in the riding of Hamilton West-Ancaster-Dundas, reportedly said she didn’t know Auschwitz was a Nazi death camp until last week, when controversial Facebook comments she made seven years ago resurfaced.

    Her remarks were brought to light by the True North Times, a satirical online publication that found a Facebook post from April 2008 featuring a friend’s photograph of part of an electrified fence and its curved, concrete supports at the death camp in Nazi-occupied Poland.

    “Ahhh, the infamous Pollish (sic), phallic, hydro posts,” Johnstone commented underneath.

    “Of course you took pictures of this! It expresses how the curve is normal, natural, and healthy right!”

    A spokeswoman for the school board says Johnstone took a temporary leave of absence Monday for the federal election campaign.