Saanich, BC – In April 2018 an encampment formed in Regina Park in Saanich. A notice to vacate was issue in June 2018 and in July a notice to cease occupation was posted. An application to seek an injunction was sought and a hearing occurred.
Friday September 7, 2018 the Honourable Mr. Justice Branch of the BC Supreme Court granted the District of Saanich and the Province of BC interlocutory injunctions to require Regina Park and the adjoining Trans-Canada Highway road allowance be vacated by 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 11, 2018. On September 12, 2018 a decampment process began and on September 14, 2018 the last occupant of the Regina Park Encampment retrieved their remaining property and peacefully departed.
On September 14, 2018 a group of approximately 75 people, including some who had been occupying Regina Park, marched from Rudd Park to Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure property. This property is located in a green space bordered by Blanshard Street / Hwy 17, Ravine Way, and Carey Road and is only around 500 meters away from Regina Park. When the organizers arrived at the property a rally was held and people erected several tents.
Saanich Police immediately contacted the property owners, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, to see if they would provide support for the Saanich Police Department to enforce the provisions of the Trespass Act. To this point, Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure have not authorize police to enforce the Trespass Act and remove the encampment from the property.
Saanich Police have seen the Ravine Way Encampment (self-referred to as Namegans Nation) become increasingly entrenched overnight and throughout the course of the day. Officers have observed large quantities of furniture and materials delivered to the site and the population has quickly grown to approximately 25 tents. There is also a significantly more confrontational tone to the group than experienced during the 5+ month Regina Park Encampment.
From the evidence we’ve seen, over the course of the 5+month encampment at Regina Park, there was a large increase in criminal activity which mostly involved property crime and persons offences. Please know that our officers are conducting increased patrols in the neighbourhood. Our number one priority is to ensure the safety of residents, people attending local businesses in the area and the people at the encampment.
If you see something suspicious, or to report a crime that has occurred, no matter how minor you think it may be, we strongly encourage you to call our non‐emergency line at 250‐475‐4321. To report an emergency, or to report a crime in progress, please call 9‐1‐1.
If you have a general enquiry, about the use of this property, please contact the property owner Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure at their general enquiry number at 250-387-3198, or via email at [email protected], or contact your local MLA office.
SPD File 18-23293 refers
Sgt. Jereme Leslie #228