Capt. Len Mann returns to the east side of Johnston Road after assisting pedestrians across the busy thoroughfare at Prospect Avenue Monday. (Tracy Holmes photo)

1,100 sign to reinstate White Rock crossing guard

Petition launched after heated exchange ends senior’s post outside White Rock Elementary

An online petition calling for the reinstatement of a White Rock crossing guard has garnered more than 1,100 signatures in less than a week.

The appeal was launched early last week, after Pat Savage says it was made clear to her that the volunteer post that she’d been manning outside of White Rock Elementary was no longer hers – news she says was delivered by a Frontiersmen of the Commonwealth captain twice: first during an exchange that became heated on Feb. 3, and again the following morning, at the crosswalk itself.

The captain “said something about a stop sign and I was fired,” Savage said Monday of the Feb. 3 conversation. Then on the Tuesday, “I got fired again.”

But while Savage, 75, alleges what transpired was the culmination of months of increasing disrespect – and concedes that she shared a few choice words of her own during the latest interactions – Capt. Len Mann said the issue arose from Savage not following the organization’s rules.

“She’s not following the rules, she’s not respecting the commanders that are above her,” Mann said, citing incidents of uniform violations and finding Savage at the crosswalk that Feb. 4 morning without the required stop sign.

She also didn’t respond to his messages about setting up a meeting to try and resolve the matter, he said.

“As far as we’re concerned now, she’s out of the organization. It’s nothing personal.”

Savage said she had left the stop sign at Mann’s home following the Feb. 3 incident, and went to the crosswalk on Tuesday because she wasn’t sure anyone else would be there to look after the children’s safety on such short notice.

Parent Jen Findlay, who operates an after-school art studio near the Johnston Road crosswalk that Savage was responsible for, told Peace Arch News she launched the petition after witnessing what had transpired that Tuesday morning, seeing how shaken it made Savage and then speaking with a “very bullish” Frontiersmen official later that week about the situation.

“It was very bizarre. Seems like they’re upholding these old traditions,” Findlay said.

Mann told PAN that the parents “shouldn’t meddle.”

“They should worry about the safety of the kids, not whether (Savage) is liked. The kids are very nice and polite, the parents have to grow up and realize what we’re here for.

“If we let the guards do whatever they want, we’d have no control over the organization.”

Findlay said she hopes to raise awareness, and to inspire change in how the organization is run. She said for her own kids, a crossing guard “is a safe place,” she said.

“Sometimes, you see them more than you see your grandparents.”

She’s also offered Savage a job supervising the after-school program at her business; a role Savage said will enable her to continue seeing many of the children she’s helped cross the road.

She said the appreciation shown by the children “does a heart good.”

Regarding the petition, Savage said she has been “absolutely overwhelmed” by the response.

“I can’t thank them enough – in fact, from the bottom of my heart.”

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

SchoolsWhite Rock

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


Pat Savage was removed from her crossing guard post at White Rock Elementary last week. (Tracy Holmes photo)

Just Posted

Clover Valley Beer Festival cancelled

Cloverdale beer fest falls victim to COVID-19

Surrey baseball association loses ‘a true giant’ in Bruce Lawson

Longtime volunteer ‘always gave his heart and soul to Surrey Canadian and the game of baseball’

Video tribute to KPU’s spring grad class also honours Andrew Petter, Bill Wright

‘We still want to celebrate our graduates, their achievements, and their resilience’

Surrey School District forecasts up to 30 per cent of students will return to class this week

Education Minister Rob Fleming said on June 1, about 60,000 B.C. children returned to school

South Surrey’s Darts Hill Garden Park to re-open – by appointment

City of Surrey-run garden will be open to visitors Thursday through Saturday

B.C. records four new COVID-19 cases, Abbotsford hospital outbreak cleared

Four senior home outbreaks also declared over, eight still active

RCMP, coroner investigate murder-suicide on Salt Spring Island

Two dead, police say there is no risk to the public

About 30% of B.C. students return to schools as in-class teaching restarts amid pandemic

Education minister noted that in-class instruction remains optional

Trudeau avoids questions about anti-racism protesters dispersed for Trump photo-op

Prime minister says racism is an issue Canadians must tackle at home, too

Help the ‘Cloverdale Reporter’ continue its mission to provide trusted local news

Facing changes together: Your community, your journalists

B.C.’s Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics goes virtual

The annual event partnering RCMP with Special Olympians is dramatically altered by COVID-19

Bateman program encourages people to sketch outside, connect with nature

#MyNatureSketch initiative encourages Canadians to become ‘bright-eyed three year olds’

Be cautious expanding COVID-19 bubble, Dr. Bonnie Henry tells B.C.

Senior homes stay off-limits as schools, businesses reopen

Most Read