Mayor Mike Morden speaks at a rally opposing the B.C. government’s decision to place modular housing for the homeless on Burnett Street. (THE NEWS/files)

Maple Ridge mayor under fire after saying homeless ‘raping and pillaging’ city

Mike Morden says words in video were ‘an expression of frustration’

Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden is being criticized for saying the city’s homeless are “raping and pillaging” in the city.

The comments were made in a 35-minute YouTube video posted Friday.

“I see us becoming, for some reason, a hot spot in the Lower Mainland for people coming here to carry on doing drugs and basically raping and pillaging all of our community and our businesses and that’s got to stop,” Morden can be seen saying in an interview with Susan Einarsson, president of Kingman Communications.

Since the video was published, Morden has been under fire for his comments. While he did not apologize for his comments, Morden said Wednesday that they were “an expression of frustration and probably weren’t appropriate.”

However, he added, his comments were a reflection of the frustration felt by citizens and businesses about prolific theft he feels is being driven by drug addiction.

READ MORE: B.C.’s homeless, vulnerable only receive adequate care when nearing death

“Housing doesn’t solve addiction,” said Morden.

Coun. Kiersten Duncan said Morden is being rightly criticized in social media.

“His comments were grossly inappropriate, and it was disappointing to hear the mayor speak that way,” she added. “It makes the city look terrible. It reflects poorly on all of council.”

She said the mayor should apologize, and strive to “carry himself better in the future.”

READ MORE: Nearly 8,000 homeless in B.C., first province-wide count reveals

The YouTube video addresses what Morden calls a “battle of the wills” between the provincial government and the city over homeless issues.

The provincial government has announced it will place 51 units of temporary modular homes on property it owns at 11748 Burnett St.

Morden took part in a rally against the project on March 30. Another rally is planned for Sunday.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Jumbo Valley to be protected, ending decades-long dispute over proposed ski resort

Development rights permanently retired for site of proposed year-round ski resort west of Invermere

Matt Andersen to tear it up in Cranbrook

Canadian singer, songwriter and guitarist showcasing new album at February concert at Key City Theatre

It happened this week in 1913

Jan. 12 -18: Compiled by Dave Humphrey from the newspapers at the Cranbrook History Centre and Archives

COTR Avalanche back in action for 2020

The College of the Rockies Avalanche volleyball teams are back in action… Continue reading

RCMP, Conservation officers, locals attempt to save elk in frozen river

Local emergency services personnel teamed up with rural residents to try and… Continue reading

VIDEO: Cold snap brings ideal conditions for Okanagan icewine

Take an inside look at how icewine is made

Horgan cancels event in northern B.C. due to security concerns, says Fraser Lake mayor

The premier will still be visiting the city, but the location and day will not be made public

B.C. landlord sentenced to two years in jail for torching his own rental property

Wei Li was convicted of intentionally lighting his rental property on fire in October 2017

PHOTOS: Eastern Newfoundland reeling, search underway for missing man after blizzard

More than 70 centimetres of new snow fell overnight, creating whiteout conditions

Prince Harry, Meghan to give up ‘royal highness’ titles

‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,’ says Queen Elizabeth II

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Calls for dialogue as Coastal GasLink pipeline polarizes some in northern B.C.

Coastal GasLink is building the 670-kilometre pipeline from British Columbia’s northeast to Kitimat on the coast

Closed mills, housing surge support a positive forecast for lumber industries

B.C. lumber producers have closed mills accounting for 18% of province’s capacity, RBC report says

Good Samaritan pays part of rent for B.C. woman facing eviction in can-collecting dispute

Zora Hlevnjak, 76, supplements her pension by collecting cans and receiving public donations

Most Read