Attack ads featuring a Richmond NDP candidate are being criticized by both their target and his Liberal counterpart for their message of hate.

Ads printed in two Chinese newspapers target Chak Kwong Au, the NDP candidate for Richmond South Centre and a City of Richmond councillor.

The bold characters on a black background criticize his support for unisex washrooms, safe-injection sites and same-sex marriage, saying the NDP's stance is leading to "moral decay."

The ads asks whether Au will turn Richmond into Vancouver's Downtown Eastside.

"This kind of biased, anonymous attack should have no place in Richmond, and in B.C.," Au said Saturday, after reviewing the ads.

Online, the postings are credited to the Better Richmond Concern Group. CTV News reached out to the group, but our calls were not returned.

"The most concerning part for me is that this kind of anonymous attack is being used again," Au said.

He said he hopes the tactic dies down as the campaign ramps up.

The riding's Liberal candidate, Linda Reid, said she hadn't heard about or seen the ads until they were brought to her attention by CTV.

She said her campaign will be focused on her platform, what changes she wants to see and what she plans to deliver if elected.

"That's the kind of campaign we run… I'm staying on the high road," Reid said.

The mayor of Richmond said he believes the items mentioned on the ads aren't really what residents should be concerned about, and he worries that the hateful messages take away from real concerns the riding has.

"I think that the attack ads are really unfortunate, and I'm not sure that they advance people's thinking as to the appropriate issues going forward into an election," Mayor Malcolm Broadie said.

With a report from CTV Vancouver's Breanna Karstens-Smith