Help the Vulnerable Of Nanaimo

Help the Vulnerable Of Nanaimo

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Tanya Hiltz started this petition to Mayor Leonard Krog,Sheila Malcolmson,

We the undersigned request that the City of Nanaimo and the Province of British Columbia take immediate, safe and effective action to provide shelter to all of the 60 to 100 people displaced from the encampment of the unhoused which was destroyed on Wesley Street.

BACKGROUND

 

On Thursday December 3, 2020, a fire broke out at the subject encampment on Wesley Street.

 

 A City of Nanaimo updated press release, distributed on December 4, stated that “Due to ongoing risk and danger to occupants and the public, the encampment has been removed and the street is being reinstated to a clear state.” It is not clear how forcing the occupants to move elsewhere, without adequate supports, has improved their safety. Folks who already experience trauma were moved along shortly after another serious event.

 

Although the City’s statement also indicated that occupants were provided opportunities to retrieve personal possessions in the afternoon of December 3 and the morning of December 4, other sources have indicated that the disposal of possessions started approximately 8:30 in the morning of December 4. Again, a population who was displaced and experienced a fire event, were given until 8:30 in the morning to retrieve their meagre possessions, which is not realistic. The area was fenced off and police and other parties were in attendance to ensure safety.

 

Many of the occupants lost not only their shelter (tents, blankets, etc.) but also many of their personal belongings like photos, prescription drugs, personal documents and clothing some of which cannot be replaced. A news video and article, updated on December 6, stated that “Local outreach workers tell CHEK News, the fire only made the situation worse for many of those who were living at the encampment.”

 

A report was prepared for the City, titled “A Response to Homelessness in Nanaimo: A Housing First Approach, in May 2008. One of the recommendations was “Addressing the problem while the scope and magnitude is still manageable” was important. It also said that “There is an existing network of service providers with a good level of cooperation and much planning work has been done.” The estimate of the homeless population at that time was between 150 and 300 individuals.

 

Here we are a full 12 years later.

0 have signed. Let’s get to 1,500!
At 1,500 signatures, this petition is more likely to get picked up by local news!