Victoria's Multicultural Affairs Minister has called for an investigation into a white supremacist group to see if its messages of racial hatred being preached on the Surf Coast are breaking the law.
Nicholas Kotsiras was appalled to read about the Creativity Movement in the Geelong Advertiser yesterday, including comments by the group's Australian leader Patrick O'Sullivan that Torquay is, and should remain, "a white area".
"To me it's uneducated, it's naive, and it's wrong," said Mr Kotsiras, who was in Geelong to launch Volunteering Week at a refugee support agency.
"I think these people should actually come and speak to migrants who have come here and see for themselves that they're making a wonderful contribution to this state."
Stickers have been put up around Torquay reading, "White Power! White People Awake. Save the White Race."
"I am going to refer (the group) to the Multicultural Commission to investigate and that will work with the Equal Opportunity Commission to see if the Racial and Religious Tolerance legislation has been breached," Mr Kotsiras said.
The proud Greek-Australian said he struggled to believe that such groups were operating in Victoria today.
The US-based Creativity Movement's members believe the white race is their religion and they are opposed to immigration.
Mr O'Sullivan, who lives in Melbourne, said that parts of the city had been "taken over by non-whites" and that "something has to be done to protect the white race".
He has refused to say how many people follow the Creativity Movement, but posted on the Geelong Advertiser's website yesterday that it "certainly has more than 12 and is growing".
Mr O'Sullivan said the minister would be wasting his time and taxpayers' money investigating the group.
"It looks like he's taking an opportunity to grandstand. We have every right to propagate our religion," he said.
The Racial and Religious Tolerance Act defines vilification as "public behaviour that incites hatred against, serious contempt for, or revulsion or severe ridicule of another person or group of people because of their race or religion".
"The Act sets a high standard for determining vilification, and it is only in extreme and serious cases that vilification will be found to have occurred."