A candidate running in the riding of Saanich-Gulf Islands which includes the Saanich Peninsula says a recent run of vandalism against election signs interferes with the democratic process.
Ron Broda of the People’s Party of Canada issued this appeal Saturday night after documenting several cases of election sign vandalism.
“The actions of these individuals is infringing upon the rights of voters in the area to be fully informed of who is seeking election in their riding,” he said in an email to Black Press Saturday.
“It is also interfering in the candidates legitimate efforts to promote their respective campaigns,” he added. All five candidates, Elizabeth May, David Busch, Sabina Singh, Ryan Windsor and I are united in voicing our shared concern and strong desire to see these incidents stop.”
The images taken in Saanich’s Gordon Head neighbourhood show the signs of the five candidates in the riding — Broda, incumbent MP Elizabeth May, Liberal Ryan Windsor, Conservative David Busch and New Democrat Sabina Singh — in varying states of damage and defacement. One of the damaged signs turns May’s last name into a homophobic slur.
It is not clear how many signs have suffered damage, but Busch said earlier this month almost 40 of his signs have been stolen or damaged between the University of Victoria and West Saanich Road.
Busch said in a social media post that election sign vandalism is subject to a $5,000 fine or a prison sentence in addition to being an attack on the democratic process.
Reports of election sign vandalism have also come from other parts of the province, including the Okanagan Valley, where vandals have defaced signs belonging to the People’s Party of Canada with signs that read “Fascist?” and “Elect a Fascist?”