Roses are red, violets are blue, and homophobia is horrible.
That’s the message of one Canadian party store worker, who received a nasty surprise on Valentine’s Day.
20-year-old Degas Sikorski is openly gay – and has spent three years working at the Party City in Edmonton.
However, the retail worker spoke out after he was the victim of a homophobic ‘prank’ at the store on Valentine’s Day.
On the Saturday Valentine’s Day shift, a supervisor had put up the Valentine’s cards left for all the employees in the break room.
However, one for Mr Sikorski had been defaced with the words “Faggot – you are not getting shifts for a reason”.
Mr Sikorski had not been assigned a shift for six weeks.
The worker told Global News he has never had issues with staff or management over his sexual orientation – and is in the dark about the nasty message.
He said: ““My jaw hit the floor. [I thought] Oh my God, I’m not safe here.”
“Suddenly I can’t be myself. Suddenly I can’t accept myself and be who I am at Party City for fear of retaliation from somebody in the staff.
“This was the first time where I felt threatened. I wasn’t able to defend myself and I felt really vulnerable.
“It was a shock to my whole world.”
His mother Shelley Sikorski added: “It’s very upsetting. I think that’s where my outrage came from. There’s no reason for it. This is somebody that doesn’t know Degas.”
A statement from the company said: “Party City does not condone this behaviour and is committed to creating a fair and inclusive working environment.
“We are currently looking into this matter and will provide more information as it becomes available.”
Mr Sikorski appealed to whoever left the message: “What I want is a confession and I want a reason and an apology.
“If Party City wants to terminate them, then Party City terminates them. I’m not looking for blood. I just want a heart-to-heart, why? Why did you do this?”
Watch a Global News report below: