Saanich mayoral candidate David Shebib ran in all 13 municipalities in 2014. In 2012 his Free Store along 5090 West Saanich Rd. was shut down by Saanich bylaw officers. He recently invested some 25 homeless individuals to stay on a rural Saanich property, even though it is not his. David Shebib/Facebook

Homeowner surprised when renter invites homeless camp to B.C. backyard

Current mayoral candidate invited roughly 20 campers previously kicked out of Greater Victoria provincial campground

The homeless camp that has sprung up on private property in Greater Victoria might not be for long.

Both the local municipality and Saanich police are exploring their options after the camp’s emergence earlier this week.

Sgt. Julie Fast said the District of Saanich is investigating the camp as a potential zoning violation, while the Saanich Police Department is exploring options through the trespass act and the residential tenancy act.

“While efforts are being made to determine who has lawful authority to be on this property, police will closely monitor the camp and respond to any calls for service relating to it,” she said.

The camp — which Fast describes as a “continuation” of the homeless camp that had occupied Regina Park for several months — came to be after Saanich mayoral candidate David Shebib invited 20 to 25 homeless people displaced from Goldstream Park to the property on West Saanich Rd.

READ MORE: ‘They had nowhere else to go,’ mayoral candidate hosting tent city campers

Most of the group has been together since the tent city at Regina Park and wanted to stay together. They moved in Tuesday afternoon and set up camp next to the house.

Chrissy Brett, spokesperson with the group of campers, said on Tuesday they expected to stay until Oct. 20.

However, Shebib is not the owner, and is not even listed as a tenant, said Sam Seera, who co-owns the property with Gurpal Aujla. Shebib’s son, Andrew McLean, is the listed tenant on a month to month agreement, Seera said.

Seera was unaware of the invitation to the campers at the time, and called the city, the police, and planned to visit the local Residential Tenancy Branch.

Fast said both the municipality and the police have communicated with the campers, property owner, and neighbours.

“Evidence has shown that over the course of that encampment, and the subsequent camp at Ravine Way, the rate of criminal activity in the area increased,” she said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

Big win for Kootenay ICE against Kamloops Blazers

ICE snap their 12 game losing streak.

Jingle Bell Walk takes over school neighbourhood

Kootenay Orchards Elementary School collects donated food items for the Cranbrook Food Bank Society

Parkour: more than jumps and flips

Parkour has been becoming a fast favourite with kids due to its popularity on the internet.

Avalanche Canada issues special public warning

Very weak layer buried under recent snow a cause for concern

Special Public Avalanche Warning for Most Mountainous Regions of BC

Avalanche Canada is issuing a Special Public Avalanche Warning for recreational backcountry… Continue reading

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Mapping the way along Pathways to Recovery

Top of the World Ranch Treatment Centre hosts community discussion about how to find and pursue recovery locally

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

B.C. fire chief pleads with Ottawa for traumatic stress support

Campbell River fire chief Thomas Doherty presented concerns to federal government

21 detained before Paris protests as police deploy in force

There was a strong police presence outside the central Saint Lazare train station, where police in riot gear checked bags

Most Read