Gary Hee with the thousands of signatures he’s accumulated against paid parking at hospital emergency rooms. (Matthew Claxton/Langley Advance Times)

Hospital parking fee fight goes from Langley to PNE to Ottawa

Gary Hee is gathering signatures near the Pacific National Exhibition

Langley’s campaigner against paid parking at Langley’s emergency room is taking his petition on the road – to the PNE, and then on to Ottawa.

Gary Hee is spending time near the Pacific National Exhibition in Vancouver, gathering signatures asking for parking fees to be removed for those visiting hospital emergency rooms.

Hee began the campaign in April this year, and gathered more than 3,500 signatures over the spring and early summer. He was specifically aiming at getting parking fees removed or reduced for people visiting Langley Memorial Hospital.

The ER parking lot at LMH is paid parking, as are all the other lots around the hospital complex.

He now has more than 3,960 names on the petition, an he has broadened the scope to a Canada-wide campaign, after hearing reports from other hospitals across the country where hospitals also charge to park.

“It’s growing,” Hee said of his petition campaign.

So far, however, it hasn’t met with success convincing local and regional authorities to change their policies.

The petition has been before local mayors and councils, and the LMH hospital board.

Hee said he was rebuffed by Fraser Health, which manages LMH’s parking lot, as the health authority said they have a contract with Impark and can’t remove parking fees.

He has also tried to present his petition to the Ministry of Health in Victoria, but was told Fraser Health had authority over parking.

He’s hoping his petition will pass 5,000 to 6,000 signatures. He said people at the PNE seem pretty excited about signing it once they learn what it’s about.

READ MORE: Campaign against Langley ER parking fees goes national

READ MORE: Campaign against parking fees is gathering momentum

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