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Park Ok for rec, use

Local Sports

Surrey's manager for city parks encourages people to use parks for recreational purpose anytime of day.

Owen Croy made the statement following yesterday's incident when a Surrey family was kicked out of the Brookside Elementary Park by a bylaw officer and a police officer.

"The City of Surrey welcomes families and their kids to recreate and play games in our parks. Thatís what theyíre there for."

But he also said official games do technically need permits.

"Families playing informal games should be allowed to use the space as long as itís free.

"The bylaw officer actually followed the letter of the bylaw, however, perhaps a bit more discretion could have been used,"

Satnam Singh Pawer whose family was out for a pickup soccer game was confronted by the bylaw officer who called the police for their removal from the park.

The officer said, "Listen to me, Iím in charge here today. So today, you will pick up your cones. You will go home."

When Pawer and others protested, the RCMP officer told them to make a formal complaint to the city.

When they asked if the rule only applies to the one field, the bylaw officer says, "It is for all the city parks, sir."

Pawer said a city known for its high crime rates, the city should be encouraging kids to stay on the fields, rather than on the streets.

He said the clarification came too later as the damaged has already been done.

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