Downtown toilets being looked at after cases of vandalism

Abuse it and lose it

A Vernon city councillor wants more information on the use – and abuse – of downtown bathrooms.

A stainless steel bathroom was installed at the intersection of 30th Avenue and 35th Street in October, 2019 and Dalvir Nahal raised some concerns about the fixture at council on Monday.

The downtown bathroom, as well as the ones at the downtown bus loop, are open 24-7, but Nahal is not sure that is such a good idea.

“Lately, we have been having a lot of vandalism,” said Nahal, noting there have been reports of fires in the bathrooms, discarded needles, physical damage and other incidents.

Nahal wants to know when the damage is occurring and how much it is costing the city to maintain and repair the loos.

“If you abuse it, you lose the privilege to have it,” said Nahal. “A lot of people are using it for shelter. People are sleeping in there.”

Nahal suggested if the bathrooms were not open 24-hours a day, there would be fewer problems.

“I just want to make sure it is not being abused,” said the multi-term councillor.

And the potties have been abused in the past.

The bathrooms at the downtown bus loop were closed for almost two weeks in May 2019 for repairs after being vandalized.

According to the city at the time, the building has been a frequent target of vandalism over the years and that has resulted in thousands of dollars in repair costs for the City of Vernon taxpayer.

City staff has been directed to look into the costs associated with maintaining and repairing the bathrooms.

More Vernon News