Complaints about national flags on balconies spark outrage with Sylvan Lake residents

Six residents in Fairway Estates were asked to remove their flags from balconies after a complaint

Joe Spichtig’s comment on the Facebook group Sylvan Lake Rant & Rave.

Six tenants in the Sylvan Lake condo Fairway Estates have been asked to remove their Canadian flag from their balconies, in accordance to condo and provincial bylaws.

John Larsen was one the six who received a complaint about the flags he had affixed to his balcony.

He said he removed the flag so as to not cause trouble but doesn’t understand the problem with having the flags out at all.

“It wasn’t like my flag was draped over the side of the balcony, it was secured to the inside of the glass,” he said.

Larsen continued, saying some of the other tenants who received a complaint and subsequent notice had their flags further back on their patios.

“One guy… he has his flag attached to a hockey stick in a pot… I just thought that was great,” said Larsen.

He was told the flag needed to come down because it violates provincial bylaws.

While the provincial condo act does not specify the allowance of the national flag, it does state that only items such as patio furniture, patio umbrella and barbecues are permitted.

“I don’t get it, it’s a patriotic thing to do. I put the flag up on my balcony to honour the Canadian soldier who have given their lives for this country and our freedom,” he said.

According to the National Flag of Canada Act, owners of apartment buildings and condominiums are encouraged to allow the national flag to be displayed.

“Every person who is in control of an apartment building, a condominium building or building in divided co-ownership or another multiple-residence building or a gated community is encouraged to allow the National Flag of Canada to be displayed in accordance with flag protocol,” the National Flag of Canada Act states.

Flag protocol details the proper way to display the national flag, and the order in which to display national and provincial flags.

Joe Spichtig on Facebook is one of the tenants who was asked to remove his Canadian flag from his balcony.

He voiced his frustration with the complaint on the Sylvan Lake Rant & Rave Facebook Page.

“…They all have to come own because it offends one of the tenants who complained to the tenant board,” Spichtig wrote on Facebook.

Spichtig’s comment of the group received 76 comments, largely in support of displaying the Canadian flag on ones property.

Larsen says he is disappointed with the complaint, as he sees displaying the Canadian flag as patriotic and not offensive.

“I don’t see what is offensive enough about displaying the Canadian flag on our balconies that someone would complain,” said Larsen.

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