Campers defy edict to leave Duncan park
A band of illegal campers defied a B.C. Supreme Court order to leave a tent city in a downtown Duncan park by 3 p.m. Thursday.
At 9 p.m., they were still there, with a security guard hired by the city keeping an eye on things, said city official Peter de Verteuil.
The group, encamped in Charles Hoey Park since March 31, remained despite an injunction directing the RCMP to enforce provisions of the court order after 3 p.m.
“They are staying put … for now,” said lawyer Troy DeSouza Thursday afternoon.
He represented the city in court Tuesday when Justice Brian D. MacKenzie granted the order.
“They had their day in court. They lost. Now they are in public defiance of a judge’s order,” DeSouza said in an email to the Times Colonist.
De Verteuil said there would be no further comment “until next steps are taken.”
In a recording posted to the Facebook page of homeless activist Chrissy Brett, a woman could be heard telling a uniformed official before 3 p.m. that people would peacefully defy the injunction. A First Nations drummer played in the park after 4, pizza and pop were delivered about 6 p.m. A photo of a rainbow over the camp was posted to the Facebook page about 7 p.m.
Brett, an advocate for more affordable housing, unsuccessfully sought a delay in Tuesday’s court proceedings.
The Duncan campers have a legal right to camp in Duncan parks after 7 p.m., but their tents must be taken down by 9 a.m.