Drinking on rooftops may be a long-standing HOCO tradition, but students will want to think twice before doing it next year.
London city council's community and protective services committee passed a bylaw prohibiting rooftop drinking. Individuals who violate the bylaw may be fined up to a maximum of $750 or simply be given a warning at police officers' discretion.
The regulation passed unanimously on Feb. 22 with councillors Mohamed Salih, Bill Armstrong, Maureen Cassidy, Phil Squire and Harold Usher voting in favour.
The bylaw evidently affects students in London and may have been brought forward as a result of student injuries.
“No bylaw is allowed to be specifically prohibitive to any certain group,” said University Students’ Council vice-president, Jamie Cleary. “But I think some come up as a result of issues with students who have fallen off roofs and injured themselves.”
Cleary said the USC’s focus is on educating students about the bylaw and possible penalties and they will make a larger push for this closer to Homecoming.
“Regardless students are going to be partying on their roofs — especially around Homecoming, because that’s the standard of what normally happens,” Cleary said.
“So my larger concern is how we’re going to educate students that this bylaw exists so that they’re not just being charged for something they didn’t know they weren’t allowed to do.”
Currently it’s not yet known how strictly enforced the bylaw will be by London Police Services.
The London Police Service and Ward 6 Councillor Phil Squire could not be reached for comment at the time of publication.