Vancouver seeks to alleviate homelessness

“The Pulse” @ Vancouver Co-Op Radio, CRFO 100.5 FM, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter  and rebroadcast over the Oct 30, 2020 edition of Cortes Currents.

Vancouver’s City Council has been passing a number of motions to alleviate the city’s homelessness crisis since May. But for those on the street or in tent cities, those motions haven’t translated into changes in their living conditions.

photo credit: The first temporary modular housing building on City-owned land opened its doors in 2017 – Photo City of Vancouver

Five options to alleviate homelessness

Earlier in September, Council directed staff to report back on five options to alleviate the homelessness crisis, including leasing apartment buildings, hotels, or motels; allowing tiny homes; creating temporary disaster relief shelters; converting City-owned buildings into temporary shelters; and opening RV parks.

Since then, Council has passed a motion directing staff to spend up to $30 million to purchase or lease apartment buildings or hotels and create an indoor temporary disaster relief shelter. More recently, Council passed another motion directing staff to research how bylaws would need to be changed to allow for tiny homes in the city.

In the last week, the federal government announced $51.5 million dollars in funding for housing for residents experiencing homelessness. According to the Tyee, it is still unclear when the funding will be provided.

This i part 2 of our interview with journalist Jen St. Denis. Jen covers the DTES beat for The Tyee.

Top photo credit: Downtown Eastside, Vancouver during coronavirus pandemic in April 2020 – by GoToVan via Flickr (CC BY SA, 2.0 License)

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