Abbotsford councillor Kelly Chahal

Stop using the term ‘monster house,’ Abbotsford councillor says

Term carries negative connotations, but used mostly for big houses with South Asian occupants

An Abbotsford councillor is urging the public to stop calling very large houses “monster” homes.

Coun. Kelly Chahal says the term, which is often used in relation to large houses built for multiple generations of the same family, has become “racialized” and associated specifically with big homes occupied by South Asian families.

Chahal spoke about the word at a recent council meeting, after a long public hearing about rules to govern the sizes of new homes built in Central Abbotsford.

RELATED: Abbotsford puts squeeze on new homes in established neighbourhoods

She elaborated on her thoughts in a brief interview later in the week.

“I think most people don’t mean to at all use the term in a negative way,” she said, noting that it can be used as a synonym for “gigantic.”

But the word “monster” can still rankle.

“I particularly don’t appreciate that term and I hope people could be respectful and understand that these homes are built to house families,” she had said at the meeting.

Before Chahal spoke, two people had alluded to the need to separate feelings about large homes that may be unpopular with neighbours with their occupants.

One elderly woman told council she disliked a “monster house” built behind her home, but said the people who moved in “are fantastic.”

A few minutes later, Raj Dhaliwal, a local realtor, thanked people for acknowledging “there are no monster people in monster homes.”

Chahal’s call was echoed by Coun. Bruce Banman, who suggested people “find another way ” of describing such houses.

Chahal had a simple answer later in the week for what a very large house should be called: a very large house.


@ty_olsen
tolsen@abbynews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

VIDEO: Abbotsford police surprise teen with gift after her bike was stolen

Girl’s bike was swiped off the family porch the morning of her birthday

Man who drove vehicle into parking lot post at Abbotsford arena must pay deductible, tribunal rules

Man said he couldn’t see post, but tribunal rules he should have been paying attention

Abbotsford Panthers celebrate 35th anniversary of title with win

Panthers come from behind to defeat Notre Dame, Mouat edges Bateman in exhibition action

Two parks left in contest to crown Abbotsford’s favourite; Round 4 bracket results

After four rounds, one park chosen to face-off against Mill Lake Park in final

Vehicle accident on Sumas and South Fraser Way intersection

Southbound traffic on Sumas Way slow as the right lane is blocked

‘It’s almost surreal’: B.C. fire chief, sidekick Sammy recap rescue mission in Bahamas

Chief Larry Watkinson and Sam the disaster dog spent 8 days assisting a search and rescue team

‘Time to take action:’ Children advocates call for national youth suicide strategy

Council wants Ottawa to make reporting of suicides and attempted suicides mandatory for data collection

Canadian inflation decelerates to 1.9% as gas prices weaken

August was the sixth straight month that price growth was 1.9 per cent or higher

Defense says burden of proof not met in double murder case against Victoria father

Closing statements begin in trial for man accused of killing daughters Christmas 2017

B.C. dog breeder banned again after 46 dogs seized

The SPCA seized the animals from Terry Baker, 66, in February 2018

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

B.C. population on pace to fall behind Alberta

Provincial population could reach almost seven million in 2043, but Alberta is growing faster

Three dogs found shot dead in Prince George ditch

The three adult dogs appeared to be well cared for before being found with gunshot wounds, BC SPCA says

B.C. Ferries wants input on concepts for a Horseshoe Bay terminal re-design

Ferry corporation accepting public feedback until Oct. 13

Most Read