Unruly Visitors Could Be Banned from L.A. County Parks

The Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance Tuesday aimed at maintaining peace and safety at the county’s parks. The new policy allows park employees to temporarily ban individuals from the county’s recreation areas if they refuse to follow rules or regulations, and especially if they display threatening or abusive behavior. 

The temporary bans start at 30 days, but can increase based on the offense. Under the ordinance, it is possible for an individual to be banned from all 87 county recreation areas at a single time. Repeated violations could result in a misdemeanor.

Supervisors passed the ordinance amid complaints from park employees who had been subjected to harassment and attacks on the job. A survey conducted by SEIU 721 — the union that represents the county’s 1,600 park employees — found 40% had been threatened, harassed, or assaulted at work. 

Stephanie Rodriguez with the Park Equity Alliance expressed concerns that the ordinance would disproportionately impact the unhoused, “who use parks as a safe haven.” To assuage some of the concerns, offenders will have access to an appeals process.