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Camera Deters Midnight Thieves

Camera Deters Midnight Thieves

Monday December 7th, 2020, CTV Reporter Brendan Strain asked Malahat Legion president, Isabelle Hammer why we livestream our Metal Recycling bin. Isabelle explains the camera deters midnight thieves and those just dumping garbage.

Bin Reduces Illegal Dumping

Isabelle explained the Metal recycling bin was established five years ago, with illegal dumping on the rise around Shawnigan Lake, the Malahat Legion branch began offering free metal recycling for the community. The offer stopped a lot of metal waste from being dumped along logging roads and helped the Legion raise money to pay its bills.

But there have been problems

But, like with any free service, there has been some bad actors and some people have begun to take advantage of the free recycling.

We brought the bins in to actually provide a service to the community,” said Isabelle Hammer, president of the Malahat Legion Branch 134. “It was to be able to drop, free of charge, any metals that people would like to put in the bins to recycle.

The Legion is always struggling for money to pay our bills.  The Legion must pay recurring expenses even though closed.  It depends upon the community through donations from the metal bin owner and bottle recycling for help to keep the legion viable while we are only partially or fully closed.  But there has been an increase in people taking advantage of the service.

We ended up putting a live feed at night, to try to deter anyone from stealing,” said Isabelle.

Live streaming on Facebook 

The live video is being streamed on the Legion’s Facebook page and has recorded dozens of examples of people stealing from the bins at night. It even shows people dumping household garbage in those bins.

Food, rotten food in fridges or on the ground, we’ve had clothing,” said the Legion president. “We have to actually assume the cost of disposing of those items because they’re not metal. It’s been a bit of an issue.

Recycling Helps the Legion Pay Bills

During the pandemic, the Legion has been shut down but bills still need to be paid and this is one of the only ways the Legion is making ends meet.  They depend on money the bin owner donates back from the bin recycling operation and from the community helping donate bottles and cans which can be recycle.

There is a live feed that captured two men walking away from the Legion branch with a recycling bag full of cans and bottles.  

Isabelle says she understands that some people may be in need and asks that people ask the Legion for help if they’re in a tight spot instead of taking from the recycling bin and bottle drives.

We want to continue providing this service and we don’t want it to go away,” said Isabelle. Please don’t steal from the Legion and if you’ve fallen on hard times, contact us again and then we’ll see where we can help.

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