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Gumboot Nation a soft touch on violations

Sometimes you just have to take the law into your own hands, with tongue firmly planted in cheek. Here in Roberts Creek, BC, aka Gumboot Nation, we’re known as cheeky eco-activists who care about clean air and our community. Therefore, if someone leaves a car idling, we figure they’re disturbing the peace, so to speak. If they park in a bike lane, they’re risking the safety of a cyclist who has to swerve onto the road into traffic to get by the offending vehicle.


That’s when a fun but fervent citizen’s action comes into play. The offender will receive one of two tickets indicating a violation notice against the Nation of Roberts Creek, issued by the Department of Good Vehicle Operation. Each comes complete with a gumboot image and notification of the infraction: “You have left your car idling” or “You have parked in the bike lane.”


The ticket for idling reminds the motorist that this action

  • “increases greenhouse gases
  • shortens the life of your vehicle
  • irritates people
  • costs you money.”

The ticket for the parking infraction provides a cautionary note: “Failure to change our habits may subject us all to a grim future” and offers this call-to-action: “Do your part! Help make Roberts Creek pedestrian and cyclist friendly. Walk, ride a bike, take public transit.”

“I have found that people who are ‘bad’ do not have a sense of humour about it,” says Donna Shugar, chair of the Sunshine Coast Regional District and a Roberts Creek resident. “They are quite affronted. Perhaps that is brought on by guilt!”


I love that residents have chosen education and soft censure in response to these violators rather than resort to angry words or revenge. As a form of direct action, these tickets harm nobody and can actually make people healthier through smiles and laughter. Who says you need to get tough on crime? The soft touch works.

July 9, 2010 at 12:49 am
  • May 29, 2012 at 7:19 pmJamie Gaffney

    It wasn’t so long ago that I saw you basking in the Sunin the mtns. In the Czech Republic.Glad to hear from Frank that you have a blog and that you remain Eco-conscious.

  • July 11, 2010 at 1:18 pmPeter

    great idea!
    Great blog.

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