Mayor Mike Morden speaks at a rally opposing the B.C. government’s decision to place modular housing for the homeless on Burnett Street. (THE NEWS/files)

Maple Ridge mayor under fire after saying homeless ‘raping and pillaging’ city

Mike Morden says words in video were ‘an expression of frustration’

Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden is being criticized for saying the city’s homeless are “raping and pillaging” in the city.

The comments were made in a 35-minute YouTube video posted Friday.

“I see us becoming, for some reason, a hot spot in the Lower Mainland for people coming here to carry on doing drugs and basically raping and pillaging all of our community and our businesses and that’s got to stop,” Morden can be seen saying in an interview with Susan Einarsson, president of Kingman Communications.

Since the video was published, Morden has been under fire for his comments. While he did not apologize for his comments, Morden said Wednesday that they were “an expression of frustration and probably weren’t appropriate.”

However, he added, his comments were a reflection of the frustration felt by citizens and businesses about prolific theft he feels is being driven by drug addiction.

READ MORE: B.C.’s homeless, vulnerable only receive adequate care when nearing death

“Housing doesn’t solve addiction,” said Morden.

Coun. Kiersten Duncan said Morden is being rightly criticized in social media.

“His comments were grossly inappropriate, and it was disappointing to hear the mayor speak that way,” she added. “It makes the city look terrible. It reflects poorly on all of council.”

She said the mayor should apologize, and strive to “carry himself better in the future.”

READ MORE: Nearly 8,000 homeless in B.C., first province-wide count reveals

The YouTube video addresses what Morden calls a “battle of the wills” between the provincial government and the city over homeless issues.

The provincial government has announced it will place 51 units of temporary modular homes on property it owns at 11748 Burnett St.

Morden took part in a rally against the project on March 30. Another rally is planned for Sunday.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Business notes: WINGS set to close on Aug. 29

A few of the things going on in Cowichan’s business community

Collision knocks over fire hydrant on Ypres Street

Duncan firefighters quick to get situation under control

Pumps not needed on the Cowichan River this year

Wet year so far has resulted in higher water levels

Pig destined for sanctuary goes missing from Cobble Hill farm

Berleen was less than two weeks from travelling to Manitoba when she vanished

578 British Columbians currently infected with COVID-19

Seventy-eight new cases confirmed in past 24 hours

Captive fawn seized from Island home

Valley resident charged and fined under the Wildlife Act

Bamfield residents, visitors pressure province as anniversary of fatal crash approaches

Letter-writing campaign makes ‘heartfelt, emotional pleas’ to improve road conditions

Pandemic could be driving more parents to get on board with flu shot: study

University of B.C. study gauges willingness for parents to vaccinate children for influenza

Watchdog clears Okanagan RCMP in death of man after arrest over alleged stolen pizzas

The man died in hospital after having difficulty breathing and broken ribs

Health Canada says several kids hospitalized after eating edible pot products

People warned not to store cannabis products where children can find them

‘It’s not just about me’: McKenna cites need to protect politicians from threats

Police investigation was launched after someone yelled obscenities at a member of McKenna’s staff

Michigan plans dedicated road lanes for autonomous vehicles

First study of its kind in the U.S. to figure out whether existing lanes or shoulders could be used

Most Read