Saanich, BC – In April 2018 an encampment formed in Regina Park in Saanich. On September 7, 2018 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.
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 to property managed by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure. This property was located in a green space bordered by Blanshard Street / Hwy 17, Ravine Way, and Carey Road. The occupants then declared themselves “Namegans Nation” and claimed the land as theirs. On September 18, 2018 the Saanich Police were requested by the property managers, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, to attend the encampment and ensure their land was vacated, by enforcing the Trespass Act.
The encampment later moved to Goldstream Provincial Park and then, on October 2, 2018, the encampment moved to a private property in the 5000 block of West Saanich Rd.
On October 13, 2018 the encampment moved again. This time the encampment moved to Provincial land managed by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure located adjacent to Highway 17 and directly behind the Saanich Fire Department. The Saanich Police contacted, The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, who issued the trespassers a notice on October 15, 2018, to cease occupying the land.
On October 16, 2018 Saanich Police spoke to those encamped on the property and informed them that police would be enforcing the Trespass Act on October 17, 2018 and they would need to vacate the property. Currently organizers of the encampment are awaiting rental trucks to arrive so they can move their property.
The Saanich Police Department will continue to monitor District of Saanich parks, and other lands, to ensure their intended uses are being observed.
The District of Saanich Parks and Management Control Bylaw allows temporary overnight sheltering in 102 of Saanich’s parks from the hours of 7 p.m. to 9 a.m. In addition, a hygiene station, including washrooms and showers, and storage facility located at Saanich Municipal Hall remain open for use from 7 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 9 p.m. These facilities are offered as a support service to those who may need to seek temporary overnight shelter. For a copy of the entire bylaw please visit the District of Saanich website https://tinyurl.com/ydfaerq2.
The Saanich Police continue to be committed to ensuring the safety of all those impacted by this camp and ask that any criminal or suspicious activity be reported to us by either calling our non-emergency line at 250-475-4321 or for an emergency, 9-1-1.
SPD File 18-25949 refers
Sgt. Jereme Leslie #228