BC Ferries is being questioned for its decision to remove an advertisement criticizing the province’s wolf cull after receiving just a single complaint.
The Raincoast Conservation Foundation poster, which calls B.C.’s planned wolf cull “unscientific, unwarranted and unethical,” denies that wolves are responsible for declining caribou herds.
Instead, the poster says that caribou populations are under fire from “habitat destruction from logging, road building, and other industrial activities.”
Eight of the ads, which enjoyed a smooth ride on BC Ferries for the past two months, have now been removed from vessels.
Company spokesperson Deb Marshall said the advertisements do not meet its standards.
“We aim to have advertising on our ships and terminals that is non-controversial, wouldn't be offensive and wouldn't be political,” she said.
Marshall said the ad should not have been posted in the first place, but it wasn’t flagged because it was posted under a non-profit category.
The decision to yank down the posters is being questioned by Raincoast, the group that paid to have it installed.
“They shouldn't be censoring people on the basis of arbitrary decisions and not explaining what those decisions are based on,” said Lori Waters.
This isn’t the first occasion a transportation agency has dealt with fallout over controversial advertisements.
In 2013, pro-Palestine posters were allowed to stay on TransLink buses in the Vancouver area despite an outcry from the public. And in Kelowna, an atheist campaign was initially rejected and then allowed. Those ads later disappeared.
With files from CTV Vancouver’s Bhinder Sajan