A video posted to Facebook is raising questions about a city of Surrey bylaw preventing people from playing games in city parks.
In the video a group of men playing a friendly game of soccer is approached by an city of Surrey bylaw officer and Two RCMP officers saying they do not have a permit.
“They were here before us.”
RCMP officer “Listen to me I am in charge here today, okay? So today you will pick up your cones and you will go home. You will make a complaint to the city of Surrey. There is no signs, you don’t agree with the bylaw, you don’t like the rule. Make a complaint that is your perogitive.”
After hearing from the Mounties the group then ask the bylaw officer directly for clarification.
“Let me speak now. Only for this field?”
Bylaw officer “It is for all the city parks, sir.”
“You see that? You see. All the parks? She said all the parks. All the parks?
By Law officer “All the city parks.”
This apparently happened June 28th.
Surrey Mayor Linda Hepner says she has not seen the video in question, but generally speaking, she says the bylaw officers are not overly aggressive, and the city encourages people to get out and play in the parks.
“But I understand that we had several residential complaints about this particular group and either their language or the way they were dealing with the field.”
Manager of Parks, Owen Croy, says you need permission to play a “semi-organized or organized” sport in a local park.
“I think if we got six young people kicking a ball around, good on them, enjoy yourselves, however if we have six adults on either side of the field and they are wearing pinnies, or shirts and skins, wearing cleats, and they are playing ninety minutes or sixty minutes of soccer, that is semi-organized and we would encourage them to get a permit.”
Croy says the purpose of the bylaw is to preserve the city’s high quality fields and prevent over-use.
If families want to get out and play, that’s fine: it’s encouraged.
Since when do we need a permit to take our kids to a park in Surrey? A Surrey resident sent this to me:My cousins and I took our kids to play at Brookside Elementary School around 7pm on June 28, 2015. While we were playing pass with our kids a bylaw officer named Hemu Narayan I.D (204350) came and told us that we had to leave the park because we did not have a permit to play there. We refused and explained how we are just playing pass with our kids and kicking a soccer ball around. We told her that we were not a team or a club of any sort we are just dads spending time with our kids. There were 6 of us adults and 6 kids just playing around. She called the police on us and had forcibly kicked off of the field. So my questions to city officials are that since when do we need permission from the city to play with our kids? If not our local parks then where do we take our kids to spend time with them? Why are we paying tax dollars to build parks that we do not have access to? The file number of the incident is 15-91-1427 and the RCMP officers name is V. Churchille.Posted by Gurpreet Singh Sahota on Friday, July 3, 2015