August 31, 2016 7:14 pm
Updated: August 31, 2016 8:44 pm

Calgary considering bylaw to ban non-commercial junk mail

WATCH ABOVE: Calgary is looking to amend bylaws that govern junk mail, including graphic pamphlets protesting abortion. Global’s Tracy Nagai reports.

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Calgary Chief Bylaw Officer Alvin Murray told Global News the city is considering some modifications to four bylaws that fall under the Calgary Community Standards Bylaw. These were put in place in 2004, and have not been amended since.

The four bylaws in question include the rules that govern junk mail, backyard fire pits, unkempt backyards and noise complaints.

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Among particular concern to some Calgarians is a consideration to eliminate junk mail that is non-commercial in nature. The current junk mail bylaw only covers material that is commercial in nature, or mail that offers a product or service for a fee.

WHERE TO DRAW THE LINE

A number of Calgarians have expressed anger and frustration over the latest round of flyers being hand-delivered to homes in protest of abortions.

The flyers have very graphic images on them and one concerned citizen, Jamie Belcourt, emailed Global News to express frustration after the flyers were distributed to the Belcourt home while two children were playing outside.

“This flyer was extremely graphic, containing several gory pictures of aborted fetuses and parts of babies. It was left on my porch as young kids (seven and four) were playing there. We live in a newer community with tons of children on every street. I am super concerned about this and think the organization(s) involved need to be held accountable for distributing graphic material.”

Scott Krahn is one of many Calgarians who recently received these graphic pro-life flyers over the past couple of weeks.

“It was horrible to see. Luckily I got to see it first. If my wife had have seen it she would have been devastated. A good friend of mine’s daughter, eight years old, got to the mail first. She got hers, and she was a basket case for days. ”

Krahn said he understands the group behind the literature is trying to get a message across, but he feels it is putting out the wrong message.

Global News did try to contact the group behind the material but have not received a response.

The proposed amendments to the junk mail bylaw would likely cover all non-commercial junk mail, including things like flyers for bottle drives or material to raise money for not-for-profit groups.

The link to the city’s survey is here.

© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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