Municipal elections last year were a chance for Surrey to move away from it’s already established history as one of the least secure cities in the province of British Columbia. Unfortunately that chance was greatly missed by municipal administration which was elected by wide majority. As it was already said here Surrey today has it’s own version of Stephen Harper, closed and silent leader, in face of Mayor of Surrey Linda Hepner.
Last month Surrey recorded extremely high number of shooting and surprised even those who track crime statistics every day and every month. In March Surrey recorded twelve shootings some of them (three) happened in just over 24 hours. Even that couldn’t force Surrey’s Mayor to speak media and address this issue.
As News1130 reported recently Mayor Hepner refused to address this issue, and referred journalists to speak with Surrey RCMP. As Surrey community is highly concerned about this situation Mayor Hepner does not think that her word should be heard and discussed.
In a statement given to The Now Newspaper on Thursday Hepner went even further with reasoning which is not quite understandable.
“I don’t think it’s fair to me. “I think it’s habitual, and so it just becomes deliberate,” Hepner said of the pattern. “Every time something happens I’m called at a political level to comment.
“I’m just refusing to engage in that kind of exercise,” she said. “I need to shift the landscape.”
Mayor Hepner also added that her intention is not to comment on the “police matter” and that it doesn’t help to a city’s cause if Mayor always responds to negative issues.
From media and a public relations point of view Mayor Hepner is shifting the landscape but in totally opposite direction. Mayor’s direction is causing more distrust in her and her administration abilities to communicate and deal with over present issues of crime in Surrey. This direction is not a strange action to Canadian politics, before Mayor Hepner BC Premier Christy Clark had a similar issues and was forced to fire her direction of communications.
Also leads general public to believe that Mayor is not able to deal with those and chooses to hide behind “police matter” tape in effort to prevent more public relations damages. Especially if we ask residents of one of the most crime targeted areas of the city, Newton, they would tell you that they’re extremely dissatisfied and disappointed with Mayor and her recent actions. City of Surrey administration raised taxes this year to pay for much needed necessities especially to fight a crime but what they are getting today is Mayor’s refusal to tell them what she’s doing to bring more security to streets.
As it was already said here Mayor Hepner should immediately fire her current advisers or if does not have them she should hire proper advisers to guide her through issues like this one.
In case that Mayor of Surrey doesn’t want to do that she should sit with a colleague of her Mayor of Delta Loise Jackson who as seasoned politician in an interview with The Now Newspaper offered well sounded opinion and model how to deal with a similar situation.
“People want to hear from the mayor. I always take all those calls. The community wants to know what’s happening; they also want to know we are determined to do whatever we can. She’s the mayor, she should be doing something, shouldn’t she? It’s part of our job”, said Mayor Jackson.