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Imminent opening of Biltmore transitional housing in Mount Pleasant prompts community debate, promises to choose tenants ‘carefully’

November 27th, 2013 · 13 Comments

There was an announcement earlier this year that the Biltmore (or, what used to be the Biltmore at 12th and Kingsway and has until recently been a Howard Johnson’s) was going to be transformed into “transitional” housing for Vancouver’s homeless. At the time, the only queries I got on Twitter were whether that would affect […]

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Retired from city hall but not gone: The woman who made all us of see the homeless as people

May 31st, 2013 · 12 Comments

Vancouver’s official advocate for the homeless had her last day at city hall Thursday, along with her birthday. My story about her in the Globe is here but I wanted to add a few words. I started covering city hall for the Vancouver Sun in the fall of 1994 (when I was a toddler, of […]

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A federal experiment proves that providing housing and services helps the most marginalized of the homeless stay housed. Now what?

March 1st, 2013 · 13 Comments

The Bosman Hotel has, for the last three years, essentially provided a mini-Riverview ward for those who need it in the middle of the downtown. It worked so well that even downtown business groups are worried about what will happen if it is simply shut down with no reasonable alternative for the most troubled of […]

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Vancouver about to kick off a rent bank to reduce homelessness

March 21st, 2012 · 8 Comments

Like Surrey, Prince George and Toronto, Vancouver is about to start a small rent bank, kicking in $150,000 of the total cost, with $350,000 coming from Streetohome, the private-sector group working on homelessness, and others. The bank is aimed at helping prevent homelessness by providing small loans to people to help them get or retain […]

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Tags: Homelessness

News today: Foreclosure on Millennium’s West Van development; shelter opens; the other Robertson blasts park board

November 26th, 2010 · 71 Comments

Quick links to news today. – The lenders for Millennium Development’s Evelyn Drive project have gone to court to start foreclosure proceedings, according to the CBC. A real blow for Millennium, even more than the village receivership in a way. It came the morning after Bob Rennie praised them for all the work they’d done […]

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Coleman says Vancouver needs to pay half the cost of operating Gregor shelters

March 25th, 2010 · 32 Comments

The city had its day in the media sun Tuesday, with a homeless count that seemed to be proving that having more shelters is keeping people off the street. The housing minister got his day today, with his Colemanesque gentle ultimatum that, if Vancouver wants to open more shelters than the province currently funds, it […]

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Homeless count numbers will be a political tool

March 24th, 2010 · 4 Comments

The city had its own homeless count, a first, yesterday, which everyone covered. Here’s my version. Interesting to note that the city’s numbers will be out in a couple of weeks — just before the five community emergency shelters are set to close April 30. I await developments on this front.

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The media storm over homelessness and Downtown Eastside never happened. What now?

March 5th, 2010 · 33 Comments

For years before the Olympics arrived, we routinely saw commentators warning that when the media arrived here and saw the scene on the Downtown Eastside and the homelessness situation, there would be a firestorm of negative coverage. That never happened. There was the odd piece here and there in the bigger newspapers, but it never […]

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Second HEAT shelter now closed

August 5th, 2009 · 13 Comments

This just out from city hall, where apparently some poor wretch is still employed to put out news releases while everyone else is on holiday. Howe Street shelter closes two days early The Howe Street shelter has closed two days ahead of schedule thanks to the availability and acceptance of alternate housing by shelter residents, […]

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Mayor Robertson’s statement on the shelters controversy

June 25th, 2009 · 5 Comments

The residents around the two homeless shelters under the Granville Bridge started complaining a month ago about the activities in the shelters and their uncertain future. At first, they didn’t get a lot of attention, but the story exploded in the last couple of weeks and has turned into one of city hall’s major unchecked […]

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