The Beacon Hill Park Trust forbids the use of Beacon Hill Park for 'profit' and 'utility'. This ban on use for 'utility' has been partially superseded by a BC Supreme Court ruling allowing homeless people to sleep in public parks as a constitutional right, but only for as long as there are no shelter beds available for them.
The Friends of Beacon Hill Park Society, whose foremost mandate is the protection of Beacon Hill Park, are extremely concerned about homeless encampments and law-enforcement vehicles damaging the very sensitive ecological areas, especially during their most fragile time in the wet season. We have consulted closely with the city parks department about both dangers, and they have acted on one of them by speaking to the police about their vehicles.
In view of the above, the Friends urge their members and all other citizens to demand and work toward the creation of sufficient shelter beds.
Just one example to illustrate the damage:
In the Mayors Grove, where the homeless encamped on the very first day, there is (or was) a small patch of very rare endangered red-listed VIOLA PRAEMORSA (prairie violets) which are only found in Canada on the southern tip of Vancouver Island.