The City of Victoria is investigating an incident involving an individual making threatening remarks to parks staff. (Black Press Media file photo)

The City of Victoria is investigating an incident involving an individual making threatening remarks to parks staff. (Black Press Media file photo)

Victoria parks staff threatened in Beacon Hill Park, refuse work

Two employees called 911 after individual made ‘threatening remarks,’ city says

The City of Victoria is investigating after an individual made threats against parks and recreation staff working in Beacon Hill Park. The incident has led to a group of employees refusing work.

According to a statement released by the city on Saturday (July 25), two municipal staff members were working in Beacon Hill Park on July 21 when they were confronted by an individual uttering “threatening remarks about harming them and members of the public.” The two workers moved to a “safe location” and called 911.

READ ALSO: Campers allowed to stay in Beacon Hill Park for now

Following the Tuesday incident, a group of parks staff chose to exercise their right to refuse work. The city is “working with the union to support our staff and ensure their working rights are respected.”

The municipality also said that staff’s work in Beacon Hill Park will be limited to picking up garbage and cleaning bathrooms until an investigation is complete.

READ ALSO: Missing 15-year-old Saanich girl

In a written statement, Mayor Lisa Helps said she was “disheartened” to hear that city staff had encountered verbal abuse and threats while working in the park, and that “everyone deserves to feel safe in their workplace.”

According to the city, staff are confronted by aggressive people occasionally but have become more common during the pandemic as more people look to find overnight shelter in parks. City officials do hazard risk assessments regularly.

READ ALSO: Victoria police investigating chop-shop found in Beacon Hill Park

Helps added that she’s grateful to parks staff’s “exceptional work” and noted that Victoria will continue to push provincial and federal government agencies to increase funding for housing and mental health services.

The city’s parks yard – located on Nursery Road in Beacon Hill Park – remains open and staff are still working in other municipal parks.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

City of Victoria

Just Posted

Carey Newman resigned from the Greater Victoria School District’s Indigenous Ad Hoc Committee May 13, citing ‘a pattern of systemic racism.’ (Black Press Media file photo)
‘Pattern of systemic racism’: SD61 Indigenous committee member resigns, calls for change

More than 350 people had added their names in support by midday Friday

Comedy balloon artist Mike Dada of Sidney hands two-year-old Mila Yiau a balloon flower as she holds the hand of her mother Hannah Liao at Sunday’s street market in Sidney. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)
Sidney Street Market parks in temporary location for 2021

Market open Sundays at Mary Winspear parking through Oct. 10

Commonwealth Place recreation centre was shut down before 8 a.m. on Friday following a power outage. (Saanich Parks, Recreation and Community Services/Twitter)
Saanich Commonwealth Place closed due to power outage, outdoor classes still running

Indoor classes, programs at pool and weight room halted

The Greater Victoria School District continues to face backlash over its wording and approach to Indigenous learners in its 2021-2022 budget talks. (Black Press Media file photo)
School district’s approach to Indigenous learners leaves Victoria teachers ‘disgusted’

Backlash grows over ‘pattern of colonial thinking permeating the leadership’

Royal Bay Secondary School students paint the crosswalk in front of their school in support of LGBTQ and marginalized members of the community (Royal Bay Secondary School photo)
Senior student leaves mark at Royal Bay Secondary School for LGBTQ+ students

Crosswalk at Colwood school painted in support of marginalized community members

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 11

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

A COVID-19 patient receives oxygen outside a hospital in Jammu, India, Wednesday, May 12, 2021. (AP/Channi Anand)
B.C. donates $500K to Red Cross COVID-19 relief efforts in India

The money will provide oxygen cylinders and ambulances for patients in communities grappling with the virus

Superintendent Aaron Paradis, community services officer with the Surrey RCMP, during a media availability about a recent drug bust in Port Coquitlam. (Photo: Lauren Collins)
Police seize 13 million ‘potentially fatal doses’ of pure fentanyl at B.C. drug lab

The evidence was seized at large, illicit drug manufacturing site in Port Coquitlam

B.C. Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth debates the province’s latest measure to control crime, March 10, 2021. The legislation allows police to impound vehicles used to transport weapons and further restricts sale of vehicle and body armour. (B.C. legislature video)
B.C. seeking ways to ‘name and shame’ gangsters, minister says

Mike Farnworth appeals to family members to talk to police

Jonathan Prest had to climb way up to the top of a dead red cedar tree to rescue a terrified cat, but he made it up and down successfully. (Facebook photos)
Tree cutter rescues cat stuck 100 feet up a dead and dried-out cedar

Jonathan Prest put himself in extreme peril to get a terrified cat out of a dangerous situation

The Arts Council of Ladysmith and District is working with several Vancouver Island art councils on the Digitial Innovation Group to improve digital skills for Island artists. (Submitted photo)
Arts group promotes digital literacy for Island artists

The goal is to leverage digital skills to promote Vancouver Island as an ‘arts powerhouse’

Italian-Canadian prisoners at the Kananaskis prisoner of war camp in Alberta. (University of Calgary/Contributed)
Italian moved to Okanagan with hope; he ended up being sent to a WWII internment camp

Raymond Lenzi shares his grandfather’s story ahead of Canada’s planned formal apology to Italian-Canadians

Most Read