Since the beginning of the summer, many campers are installed on the beaches of the Gaspé peninsula, causing inconvenience to the residents.
July 27, 2020 11h18
Updated at 13h25
Wild Camping in Gaspésie : the PQ is urging Quebec to act
Initiative of journalism-local – The Sun
The pq asks Quebec to “send a strong message” and to act in the case of wild camping in supporting municipalities in their efforts to tighten the screws to violators, including enforcing the provincial regulations on the beaches.
While the grumbling continues to be felt in the Gaspé peninsula vis-à-vis the campers roaming who stormed the beaches of the peninsula, the Parti quebecois (PQ) calling for a rapid response of the government of Quebec. “This situation causes problems of safety, of co-existence with the citizens of the region and gatherings too tight in the time of a pandemic,” notes the member of the parti québecois de Gaspé and spokesperson in the field of tourism, Méganne Perry-Mélançon.
The mp asks the deputy prime minister and minister of public Safety, Genevieve Guilbault, to come in and do the inventory of the gaspesian beaches in order to launch a message to visitors; demonstrate civility and follow the rules.
It claimed then that the provincial government gives a special budget to fund the operations of the Sûreté du Québec (SQ) that revolve around the beaches, especially during the summer period. The member of parliament for Gaspé application to Quebec to work with the municipalities to ensure that the most affected among them, can hire security officers to patrol the beaches.
Méganne Perry-Mélançon also wants to see a special monitoring of the beaches of the region in order to avoid “that they do not become a place of accommodation”.
The provincial government
If this saga of the wild camping seems to be no end in sight, it is that the beaches, being property of the provincial government, cannot be governed by elected officials. The regulation prohibiting motorized vehicles on the fragile environments, for example, could not be applied by the SQ that when a representative of the ministry of the Environment is on-site to find an infringement, as the law derives from the law on the quality of the environment.
Since the beginning of the déconfinement, the SQ went to many times doing patrols and awareness-raising on the beaches the most heavily used by campers, nomads, but has given no finding of a violation. “I am from Gaspé, I would also like it discourages me, but it was not the right to give tickets if the ministry of the Environment is not there”, drops a police officer during a patrol to the beach at Douglastown.
Due to the pandemic of COVID-19 and the closure of international borders, the Gaspé peninsula is heavily trafficked by tourists this summer.
“It does not make sense”
On the sidelines of the press briefing on the COVID-19, the vice prime minister and minister of public Safety, Genevieve Guilbault, was said to be extremely shocked of the slippage that occurred on the beaches of the Gaspé peninsula. “It just breaks the heart to see images like this,” says Ms. Guilbault. It is, however, satisfied to see a rise of Quebecers who travel in the province. “This is one of the positive consequences of the COVID,” she said.