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

Kelowna firefighters douse blaze in hedges

The cause of the fire on Renfrew Road is under investigation.

Kayaker still missing as COSAR continues aerial searches

71-year-old Zygmunt Janiewicz was reported missing Friday

Kelowna Springtime Regatta draws more than 50 sailboats

Sailors treated to windy, excellent long weekend conditions on Okanagan Lake

Crews responding to car crash in West Kelowna

A collision has been reported at the intersection of Carrington Road and Butt Road.

Get those flowers competition ready

Gardeners will come together June 29, for the 22nd Juried Flower Show

Weather holds up for Rutland May Days

60th annual May Day midway, market and entertainment saw hundreds of attendees

Update: Plan to see more smoke from South Okanagan wildfire

Richter Creek wildfire, 12 kilometres west of Osoyoos, is an estimated 400 hectares

Raptors beat Bucks 118-112 in 2OT thriller

Leonard has 36 points as Toronto cuts Milwaukee’s series lead to 2-1

South Okanagan runners take top spots in Peach City RunFest

Both the top male and female half-marathon winners were from Penticton

Former Greyhound Canada employees gather in Okanagan to say a final farewell

“Greyhound may take our jobs but they will never take our friendships,” says former bus driver

‘Teams that win are tight’: B.C. Lions search for chemistry at training camp

The Lions added more than 50 new faces over the off-season, from coaching staff to key players

B.C. VIEWS: Reality of our plastic recycling routine exposed

Turns out dear old China wasn’t doing such a great job

Okanagan tattoo fundraiser draws tons of support

Lineup around the block in Vernon for start of Five Fathoms Tattoo event for Children’s Hospital

Carbon dioxide at highest levels for over 2.5 million years, expert warns of 100 years of disruption

CO2 levels rising rapidly, now higher than at any point in humanity’s history

Most Read