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Spitting mad with behaviour at Richmond pool

Regular at Minoru is fed up with other patrons bad habits and wants the City of Richmond to take action
no spitting sign
A sign at Minoru Pool outlines the dos and don’ts for the public in words and pictures. Photo by Philip Raphael/Richmond News

In a community faced with issues concerning language on signs, it seems even notices using basic pictograms are having trouble getting their message across.

Greg Clackson, a frequent swimmer at Minoru Pool, is literally spitting mad about the conduct of some fellow pool users.

The reason?

Clackson claims some swimmers pay no heed to numerous signs posted in the facility’s changing rooms and showers to refrain from spitting inside the building — in the changing room shower area and even in the pool.

After witnessing people brazenly flouting the rules, Clackson said he confronted a pair of men and asked them to stop their unsanitary behaviour.

“They got really confrontational and thought they were being picked on,” Clackson told the News. “One guy said, ‘I’ve got a cold, that’s why I’m spitting it up.’”

Clackson told them that’s all the more reason not to continue, for concern of spreading illness.

“There’s high spots in the showers where the water really doesn’t wash stuff off,” Clackson said. “And there are kids in there with bare feet. It’s very unhygienic.”

Clackson said he understands that many people shy away from the facility because of such behaviour.

City of Richmond spokesman, Ted Townsend said in an email that, “We follow all applicable health standards for dealing with issues of cleanliness and hygiene and can ensure users that our aquatic centres are safe.

“Unfortunately, we do have some patrons who may engage in spitting or other unsanitary practises, but this represents a very small number of our patrons.”

He added that pool users are encouraged to respect the concerns of other users and community standards for behaviour.

Townsend said, based on recent public input from patrons, the signage is being reviewed to see if a more comprehensive approach is warranted to deal with the issue.

“The topic has been placed on the agenda for the February meeting of the Richmond Aquatic Services Board to discuss,” Townsend said.

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