Security fencing erected, nuisance bylaw implemented as homecoming makes full return in Waterloo |

2022-09-24 03:18:21 By : Mr. Amy Chen

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The city is looking forward to an eventful weekend as Wilfrid Laurier University’s homecoming makes a full return this weekend, Sept. 22 to 25, after two years of virtual and hybrid events.

Laurier says it will be welcoming back the classes of 1970, 1971 and 1972, among many others for special reunion events, most of which were postponed due to the pandemic.

“We’re proud to welcome everyone as part of our Golden Hawk family, and we continue to work closely with our community partners to encourage safe and respectful celebrations this year,” Jason Coolman, Laurier’s vice-president, advancement and external relations, stated in a press release.

City council held a special council meeting on Wednesday to put its nuisance bylaw in effect, an enforcement tool to deal with unsanctioned public gatherings normally in effect March 16 to 18, for St. Patrick’s Day celebrations.

Security fencing has been erected along the street where students gather.

“Local community partners continue to work together to end the unsafe and unsanctioned street gatherings that have once again been occurring in the region’s university district,” the city said in a press release sent out Thursday afternoon.

During the last month, the Waterloo Regional Police Service has been working with municipal enforcement and special constables to increase their security presence in the university district. Enforcement action has been ongoing, it says.

For the period of Aug. 24 to Sept. 18, police say they laid 78 charges under the Liquor Licence Act and 391 charges under the Highway Traffic Act. The city says it laid seven noise charges and two nuisance charges.

“The work of Region of Waterloo Paramedic Services, the City of Waterloo, Waterloo Regional Police Service (WRPS), and emergency services partners, together with Wilfrid Laurier University and the University of Waterloo to ensure the safety of students and community members has become even more significant with the current challenges local hospitals are facing,” the press release states.

Nicole Papke, director of municipal enforcement services for the City of Waterloo, notes that large street gatherings can put everyone at risk.

Students and alumni are being reminded of the consequences that could result from their actions, as those identified could also face suspension and/or expulsion from their post-secondary institution.

“As homecoming approaches, we are reminding students of the positive impact they can have and asking them to keep their community top of mind, to be respectful and look out for one another and our neighbours, as we celebrate all that makes us proud of being a Golden Hawk,” said Ivan Joseph, Laurier’s vice president, student affairs.

This Saturday, Sept. 24, the Wilfrid Laurier University Alumni Association (WLUAA) will honour the recipients of its prestigious Awards of Excellence with a traditional Homecoming Pancake Breakfast outside on the quad. The Laurier Golden Hawks football team will play the Ottawa Gee-Gees at University Stadium (at 1 p.m.), with the return of the Alumni Endzone Party and the West Endzone Party during the game.

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