Nelson city council’s decision to stop putting up community banners will hurt groups like Kootenay Pride, writes Jason Peil. Photo: Tyler Harper

LETTER: Banning the banner

From reader Jason Peil

Re: “Nelson council scraps banner, flag policy,” May 23

Recent closed-door decisions by Nelson city council have taken away the right of 19 user groups to display their public awareness banners over Baker Street, and also takes away the Pride Flag (one of the only other flags to fly at city hall) that flew this past week.

These decisions apply a blanket ban over use of public space irrespective of the equity problems faced by groups like Kootenay Pride that use this space to attract allies to the parade and events. Even though Kootenay Pride is a minority facing an uphill climb, it hosts one of Nelson’s biggest charitable fundraisers each year.

They gather money that gets redistributed to the community through charities that help everyone. That means money raised by Pride in the past decades went out to the Red Cross, Nelson Women’s Centre, the Food Cupboard, ANKORS, Transconnect, and several other community agencies or projects that promote inclusion.

The banner puts feet on the street for parade day which also means money in the stores on Sunday afternoon (a much-appreciated boost for Baker businesses). In addition to that, several other big important charities and community fundraisers are going to be poorer next year if the banner ban goes ahead.

The Road Kings and Coldest Night come to mind immediately. How much less aware will the public be of these initiatives? How much loss for our business community? How much are our activities worth to our community? How much will this decision to dis-include Pride and all the charities cost our community spirit?

I know I feel less included in Nelson after this decision. Regardless of wishing to sidestep controversy, this council has just stepped on the weakest members of the community.

Jason Peil


Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Supreme Court of Canada will hear Sinixt appeal May 12

B.C. has appealed aboriginal hunting case through several levels of court starting in Nelson in 2016

Nelson’s Jesse Pineiro named B.C. boxing coach of the year

Pineiro and his fighters from Nelson Boxing Club were honoured at provincials

Fire destroys Fauquier restaurant

Early-morning blaze destroys Mushroom Addition

Salmo RCMP report drug bust

Fentanyl, methamphetamine and cocaine were seized along with Canadian cash

Nelson Leafs lose to Beaver Valley, will face Spokane in playoffs

Reid Wilson also finished the regular season third overall in scoring

VIDEO: Illicit drug overdoses killed 981 in B.C. in 2019, down 38%

Chief coroner says figures were down about a third in the province’s fourth year of the opioid crisis

VIDEO: B.C.’s seventh coronavirus patient at home in Fraser Health region

Canada in ‘containment’ as COVID-19 spreads in other countries

B.C. takes over another Retirement Concepts senior care home

Summerland facility latest to have administrator appointed

RCMP pull office from Wet’suwet’en territory, but hereditary chiefs still want patrols to end

Chief says temporary closure of field office not enough as Coastal GasLink pipeline dispute drags on

Prescription opioids getting B.C. addicts off ‘poisoned’ street drugs

Minister Judy Darcy says Abbotsford pilot project working

Royals, Elvis, Captain Cook: Hundreds of wax figures find new life in B.C. man’s home

Former director of Victoria’s Royal London Wax Museum still hopes to revive wax figure tourism

Teck CEO says Frontier withdrawal a result of tensions over climate, reconciliation

Don Lindsay speaks at mining conference, a day after announcing suspension of oilsands project

Okanagan man swims across Columbia River to evade Trail police

RCMP Cpl. Devon Reid says the incident began the evening of Thursday, Feb. 20

‘Hilariously bad’: RCMP looking for couple with forged, paper Alberta licence plate

Mounties said the car crashed when it lost a wheel but the duo ran away as police arrived

Most Read