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One-person protest against tree cutting

Ann-Michelle Dereus was so distressed to learn a large tree would be chopped down on the property beside her 198 Street home that she staged an impromptu one-person protest Monday morning. The working mom says it was her first sit-in and it ended after an hour when a representative of the owner warned her she was trespassing. - Dan FERGUSON/Langley Times
Ann-Michelle Dereus was so distressed to learn a large tree would be chopped down on the property beside her 198 Street home that she staged an impromptu one-person protest Monday morning. The working mom says it was her first sit-in and it ended after an hour when a representative of the owner warned her she was trespassing.
— image credit: Dan FERGUSON/Langley Times

A Langley resident was so distressed to learn a large tree would be chopped down next to her home that she staged a brief sit-in Monday morning (July 21).

Ann-Michelle Dereus says she sat next to the tree in a vacant lot beside her home for about an hour, arguing with the crew clearing the lot until a supervisor arrived and told her she was trespassing, which was when she left.

“I don’t want to break the law,” said Dereus, who said she acted out of frustration because she couldn’t convince the crew to spare one large older tree near the back of the lot in the 3400 block of 198 Street.

“It was my first sit-in and I hope it’s my last.”

Dereus said she understands the owner of the property has the right to clear the site, but she was hoping to talk the workers into preserving the one tree.

A recently-passed Township tree-protection bylaw that restricts tree cutting in Brookswood doesn’t apply to the site, because the property is located just outside the area covered by the regulations.

The site is zoned for single-family housing, identical to the other houses on the block.

At press time, attempts to contact the owner had not been successful.

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