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Campbell 'treating us like criminals': Morton

Supporters and members of the Western Canada Wilderness Committee (WCWC) who tried to present Premier Gordon Campbell with a wheelbarrow full of petitions were locked out of Vancouver's World Trade Centre on May 6.

The petitions included 33,000 signatures: 20,000 from people who demand the closure of open-net cage salmon feedlots, and 13,000 from people who want marine feedlots removed from wild salmon migration routes.

The group of roughly 30 assembled at Canada Place Wednesday. After a short presentation from the Wilderness Committee's Geoff Senichenko and salmon activist Alexandra Morton, the group continued to the World Trade Centre.

There they were met by a security guard who told them that he would deliver the petitions to the premier, but refused to let them in.

“I am accepting the petitions on behalf of the premier,” said the guard, who wouldn’t disclose his name. After receiving complaints from the crowd he responded, “There is no one upstairs for that.”

A second security guard emerged from the building confirmed that the group would not be allowed into the building.

Morton expressed her dismay about not being able to deliver the petition.

“This is 13,000 signatures and he won’t even allow me into his office to put this on his desk… he is treating us like criminals,” Morton said.

“This really surprises me,” said Senichenko. “This should be a public building, government offices are here and it should at least be open to concerned citizens communicating with their government.”

Kim Hickey, who is responsible for tenant services at the Vancouver World Trade Centre, said “We don’t usually comment on these kinds of things.”

Morgan J. Modjeski reports for The Tyee

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