Saturday May 15, 2:30pm @ Science world
Free food and smokes provided.
Mayor Gregor Robertson’s recently commissioned homeless count shows a 12% increase in homelessness since 2008, the year of his election to office. Although Robertson and the Vision caucus promised to end homelessness, they have responded to this increase with the unaccompanied strategy of millions of dollars for increased policing. Now, as of April 2010, the social housing component of the Olympic Village is being handed over in its entirety to the police and other Vancouver “public safety” workers. The original promise of 33% low-income units has dwindled to a token amount, if not 0%, in the context of gentrification and a citywide decline in the availability of affordable housing.
1) Implement original commitment of 2/3rds affordable housing in the Olympic Village, half of which is low-income.
2) Apologize unambiguously for replacing the low-income units with police housing by reversing the decision and placing a moratorium on the market sale of all promised affordable units.
3) Stop criminalizing the poor: scrap Project Civil City and the discriminatory ticketing quota system.
4) Stop using city policy to facilitate luxury condo construction, real estate speculation, and gentrification.
Organized by: VanAct!, Streams of Justice, Citywide Housing Coalition
Endorsed by: DTES Women Centre Power of Women Group, Community Advocates for Little Mountain, Impacts on Communities Coalition, Food Not Bombs. Endorsed by Carnegie Community Action Project, the Downtown Eastside Neighborhood Council, the Purple Thistle, The Organizing Centre for Social and Economic Justice, Action Society Against Poverty, Justicia for Migrant Workers, Vancouver-Seattle Womens Action Network, Climate Justice Vancouver, Vancouver Community Mobilization Network.
Under the City’s original housing legacy commitments for the Olympic Village, 2/3rds of the homes were to be affordable (that’s 800 out of 1200 units).
Half of these affordable homes (a full 400 homes) were supposed to go to low-income residents, including the homeless. Only 1/3rd of the total homes were to be unaffordable market condos.
In 2006, the commitments were reduced by Mayor Sam Sullivan and in March of 2007, city council approved a reduction from the promised 66% affordable down to 20% (250 out of 1200 instead of 800 out of 1200). Under this new plan, amidst a sky-rocketing homelessness crisis, only 8% of the total would be low-income.
Gregor Robertson was elected in the Fall of 2008 with a mandate to “end homelessness” but has instead continued the NPAs strategy of criminalizing the poor and abandoning housing commitments. To meet the staffing demands of Project Civil City and the ticketing quota and warrants system, Gregor has hired 100 extra cops, giving an extra $13 million to the VPD in 2009 alone. Now, in order to house these new cops, Gregor has, as of April 20, 2010, announced the elimination of the vast majority of promised dedicated low-income social housing in the Olympic Village.
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