Tent city campers have moved to David Shebib’s residence in Saanich on Tuesday afternoon (Sam Seera’s property), after leaving Goldstream campground Oct. 2. (Travis Paterson/News staff)

Homeless campers pack to leave private Saanich property

Camp Namegans agreed to leave by Oct. 12 after 10-day stay

Property owner Sam Seera stands firm by his deadline to have campers out today because he said neighbours are complaining.

Ten days after leaving Goldstream Provincial Park campground, homeless campers are packing their belongings in preparation to move once again, this time from Seera’s private residence in Saanich. His tenant, mayoral candidate David Shebib, had offered approximately 20 campers a place to stay in his yard after their two-week setup in Goldstream Provincial Park.

READ MORE: Camp Namegans agree to vacate private Saanich residence by Friday, Oct. 12

Chrissy Brett, a homelessness advocate and leader of Camp Namegans, the roving tent city that has made its way around the CRD over the last year, said she doesn’t know where their next destination will be.

“We haven’t decided, until the last minute, where we’ll go,” Brett said on the morning of Oct. 12. “I think we may be continuously chased from place to place by police and municipalities choosing to waste a lot of money on things like that instead of trailers or actual housing.”

The campers expect to leave the property at 5090 West Saanich Road this evening. Brett said she is picking up the trailer Friday afternoon. The camp originally planned on having trailers the day before to pack their belongings, but couldn’t arrange a truck in time and are now packing in hopes of leaving this evening or by Saturday morning. Brett asked Seera for an extension so they could set up at their next location in daylight, but he said no.

If they are still on his property on Saturday, Seera said he would be very angry and would no longer support or work with the campers.

There are approximately 25 people still with the group, with around 15 people staying in the Saanich camp at any given time, she said. They want to stay together, because of the sense of community, family and safety Brett said can’t be found at “supportive housing that aren’t supportive at all.”

The 10-day stay in Saanich has been a good break for the campers to relax and regroup, Brett said, adding they are thankful to the property owner for his help.

The landowner, Seera says he has spent $1,250 on the campers to date – $250 to rent a trailer to remove belongings, $600 for a port-a-potty and $400 for food. He’s unsure what kind of cleanup costs he faces once they move today.

“I think it was a shock to all of us that a private landowner has more compassion and ability to communicate with us than the provincial government or municipality,” Brett said.

READ MORE: Saanich property owner says homeless campers have been nothing but respectful


@KeiliBartlett
keili.bartlett@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

More wind storms to hit Vancouver Island, expected to taper off for Christmas Day

Another special weather statement in effect for evening of Dec. 19

Councillor criticizes board overseeing wastewater treatment project

Coun. Judy Brownoff accuses project board of ignoring public input

Catch last call and a cheap ride home: Late night buses coming to Victoria in 2019

New plan will extend service on weekends with last trip leaving downtown at 3 a.m.

West Shore RCMP investigating after parking lot carjacking in Langford

Man was thrown from his vehicle near Millstream Road McDonald’s Monday night

Courtesy parking tickets invite Victoria to pay it forward

Christmas program to cut drivers a break in the city has run for more than two decades

Santa visits some of Victoria General Hospital’s littlest patients

Santa flew in to the hospital via air ambulance helicopter

READER POLL: Do you have turkey or ham for Christmas dinner?

What are you having for Christmas dinner? Canadians gobbled up 3.3 million… Continue reading

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Dec. 18, 2018

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

UBC study could spare cancer patients from side effects of radiation

Her research has drawn a connection of Chromosome 6 genes to pulmonary fibrosis susceptibility.

‘Laverne & Shirley’ star, ‘Big’ director Penny Marshall dies

Marshall died of complications from diabetes on Monday, Dec. 17, 2018, at her Hollywood Hills home. She was 75.

B.C. Court of Appeal to rule in terror case that centres on RCMP conduct

B.C.’s appeal court is scheduled to release a decision today on a couple whose guilty verdict over plotting to blow up the provincial legislature was thrown out by a lower court judge.

Trump backs off on demand for $5 billion to build a border wall

Congress and President Donald Trump continue to bicker over his demand that lawmakers fund a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

Canadian detained in China, not clear if related to two other detentions

Reports suggest the person is not a diplomat or entrepreneur doing business in China.

Trudeau sees 2019 election as choice between positive Liberals, divisive Tories

Trudeau is drawing much the same battle lines that propelled the Liberals to a come-from-behind victory in 2015

Most Read