Red Deer First candidates Tanya Handley and Darren Young pick up the pieces of their damaged election signs Monday. Members of the group said the vandalism of their election signs has been targeted and this is the third time they've had to fix a mass amount of damage to their signs.

Red Deer First candidates Tanya Handley and Darren Young pick up the pieces of their damaged election signs Monday. Members of the group said the vandalism of their election signs has been targeted and this is the third time they've had to fix a mass amount of damage to their signs.

Sign vandalism frustrates candidates

A group of municipal candidates believe destruction of their campaign signs along 40th Avenue, north of 19th Street, on Sunday night was a targeted attack.

A group of municipal candidates believe destruction of their campaign signs along 40th Avenue, north of 19th Street, on Sunday night was a targeted attack.

It was the third time Red Deer First has had to repair their signs after they were heavily damaged by vandals.

Some have become adept at what candidate Darren Young called “Frankenstein-ing” them back together, using new material to repair the old.

“It’s freaking frustrating,” said Young. “Frustrating beyond comprehension.

“I understand some levity and playing around, but this is clearly vandalism with an intent and that hurts us.”

Young was joined by fellow candidates Tanya Handley, Bob Bevins, Calvin Goulet-Jones and Janella Spearing, all running under the Red Deer First banner, and their campaign manager Ryan Handley on Monday to put the signs back together.

They have spent weekends, days and evenings fixing signs.

“It takes away our time from being able to go and knock on doors and talk about what is important to them when we are here,” said Tanya Handley.

The campaign is made up of mostly self-funded individuals, so all repairs to the signs come out of the pockets of the Red Deer First candidates.

Ryan Handley said they filed a complaint with the police and may offer a reward if anyone has any information on who damaged their signs.

“This points to not kids with big trucks,” said Ryan Handley. “It’s targeted.”

He pointed to some signs to the north of their signs that were still standing.

Young was hard at work fixing not only Red Deer First signs, but also the signs of others who had been damaged, including candidate Buck Buchanan.

“A few of them have been knocked down,” said Buchanan.

“Sometimes the wind has toppled some of them. As far as vandalism, there has been some, on 30th Avenue there was some a week or so ago with a swath that went down.

“It’s crimes of opportunity.”

This isn’t Buchanan’s first election and he has experience when it comes to damaged signs.

“It seems to be hit or miss,” he said.

“In a lot of instances I don’t believe it is a personal thing.”

Red Deer First members insist that this attack was directed at them.

“If it is, shame on whoever did it,” said Buchanan.

“I think everybody deserves the same respect. If someone out there has turned it into a personal axe to grind against a candidate, I think that is terrible.”

A Facebook group is set up so candidates can communicate with each other if any see damaged signs. The group, called Red Deer Election Signage Candidate Communication, was set up by Goulet-Jones.

Other candidates have eschewed signs altogether: both Jon Wieler and Paul Harris have said they won’t have election signs.

Candidates are notified of damaged signs by the City of Red Deer and have 24 hours to repair or remove them. If they are not dealt, with the candidates are fined $100.

mcrawford@bprda.wpengine.com

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

Just Posted

Alberta has 1,910 active cases of COVID-19 as of Wednesday. Red Deer is reporting five active cases, with 108 recovered. (File photo)
Red Deer reports 25th COVID-19 death

415 new cases identified provincially Saturday

More than 120,000 Albertans have signed up to get the COVID-19 vaccine in the first two days of appointment bookings. (Photo courtesy Alberta Health Services Twitter)
Alberta Health Services apologizes after seniors struggle to book vaccine appointments

The CEO and president of Alberta Health Services is apologizing after seniors… Continue reading

Red Deer’s Kyle Moore, 26, will be a houseguest on Season 9 of Big Brother Canada. (Photo courtesy Big Brother Canada)
Red Deer man will be a houseguest on Big Brother Canada

A Red Deer man will be a houseguest on the upcoming season… Continue reading

Red Deer Public Schools says that in the absence of additional funds from the provincial government, there was no consideration of using alternate classroom sites in the district. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Red Deer Public Schools launches online engagement process

Red Deer Public schools is seeking community input to help ensure a… Continue reading

Red Deer Rebels defenceman Mason Ward battles with a Medicine Hat Tigers’ forward during the WHL Central Division season opener. (Photo by Rob Wallator/ Red Deer Rebels)
Tigers come back to spoil Red Deer Rebels home opener

It’s been nearly 345 days since the Red Deer Rebels last played… Continue reading

An arrest by Red Deer RCMP is facing online scrutiny. No charges have been laid and the incident is still under investigation. (Screenshot of YouTube video)
Red Deer RCMP investigating violent arrest caught on video

Police say officer ‘acted within the scope of his duties’

Ottawa Senators goaltender Matt Murray (30) stands in his crease as Calgary Flames left wing Andrew Mangiapane (88), left to right, defenceman Rasmus Andersson (4), Matthew Tkachuk (19), Mikael Backlund (11) and Mark Giordano (5) celebrate a goal during second period NHL action in Ottawa on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Calgary Flames beat Ottawa 6-3 to end Senators’ three-game win streak

Flames 6 Senators 3 OTTAWA — The Calgary Flames used a balanced… Continue reading

Toronto Maple Leafs centre Auston Matthews (34) falls on his knees as he skates around Ottawa Senators defenceman Artem Zub (2) during third period NHL hockey action in Toronto on Thursday, February 18, 2021. The Maple Leafs will be without star centre Auston Matthews when they take on the Edmonton Oilers Saturday. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Toronto star Auston Matthews won’t play as Leafs face Oilers

EDMONTON — The Maple Leafs will be without star centre Auston Matthews… Continue reading

Crosses are displayed in memory of the elderly who died from COVID-19 at the Camilla Care Community facility during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mississauga, Ont., on November 19, 2020. The number of people who would have died from a COVID-19 infection is likely to be much higher than recorded because of death certificates don't always list the virus as the cause of a fatality, experts say. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Death certificates don’t accurately reflect the toll of the pandemic, experts say

The number of people who would have died from a COVID-19 infection… Continue reading

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 7, 2021. A single dose of Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine is barely enough to cover the average pinky nail but is made up of more than 280 components and requires at least three manufacturing plants to produce. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
From science to syringe: COVID-19 vaccines are miracles of science and supply chains

OTTAWA — A single dose of Pfizer-BioNTech’s COVID-19 vaccine is barely enough… Continue reading

Wetaskiwin RCMP say a Maskwacis man died after he was struck by a vehicle. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Clare’s Law in Saskatchewan used handful of times; Mounties review their role

REGINA — A first-of-its-kind law in Canada meant to warn those at… Continue reading

The Magpie river in Quebec is shown in a handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Boreal River MANDATORY CREDIT
Quebec river granted legal rights as part of global ‘personhood’ movement

MONTREAL — With its kilometres of rapids and deep blue waters winding… Continue reading

Thorough sanding of a table top is usually the first step to renewing a finish. Wax contaminants can sometimes still remain on a surface like this after sanding. Cleaning with rubbing alcohol and a rag gets rid of these contaminants without leaving a residue behind. (Photo by Steve Maxwell)
Houseworks: Fixing wood finishes

Q: How can I stop polyurethane from beading up on a mahogany… Continue reading

Most Read