Ottawa police investigate 'inappropriate' letters from Santa

greensnacks

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Dec 20, 2004
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Wonder what they wrote?

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Ottawa police have launched an investigation after a complaint that at least 10 Ottawa children have received letters from Santa Claus containing demeaning or insulting language.

Ottawa police Const. Alain Boucher confirmed Thursday that police are looking into the problem flagged by Canada Post's Santa letter program.

Volunteers for the program, who are current or former Canada Post employees, respond to letters addressed to Santa Claus at the North Pole. The response includes a standard printed message and a personalized note that refers back to the individual child's own letter.

Program manager Cindy Daoust said the content that sparked complaints ranged from "inappropriate language and observations about the child's letter to Santa to more disturbing comments."

She said some of the letters were sent to younger children whose parents opened the letters, but a few were opened by the children themselves.

"We've spoken to a lot of these parents and expressed our dismay," she said. "We are devastated over this."

She added that there has never been a similar incident in the 26 years that the program has been running.

Canada Post issued a news release Thursday announcing that it would stop delivering the letters for at least two days and was making changes to its system for responding to the Santa letters to ensure this kind of thing doesn't happen again.