LETTER: Sour experience at Salmon Fest gate upsets letter writer

Walking into Tyee Landing, we were met by two burly security guards…

To the Editor,

Next year we will have our Labour Day salmon barbecue at home. This year was a bust.

Walking into Tyee Landing, we were met by two burly security guards, dressed in black uniforms. Our bags were searched to make sure we did not carry any drinks, including water.

My friend is diabetic, and her ginger tea and water were confiscated. She has lived and worked in this community for 45 years, and was coming from her church service, and on her way to visit grandchildren. Obviously, a big threat to the gathered festival goers, as was the young mother with two small children in a stroller, who was not allowed in with drinks for her babies.

We bought our dinners anyway, although appetites had greatly diminished, due to this kind of welcome. We sat at a table, eight friends in our 60s and 70s, eating our dry food. No one felt like drinking water from plastic bottles or pop from aluminium cans. And heaven forbid, no one dared to go and get a beer.

It is a given that the police or other black uniformed security guards were lurking outside the gates, ready to nab one and all. I had been stopped the day before in front of a liquor store, after buying my weekly bottle of wine. “You swerved on the left turn,” I was told—what ever that means.

As a friend put it, they are trying to stop the local crime wave, perpetrated by old women and young mothers. We must be easier targets than the burglars and drug dealers.

Rayana Erland,

Port Alberni

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