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Homeless shelters make a dramatic change to downtown

February 19th, 2009 · 4 Comments

It’s hard to get a read on Vancouver’s homeless situation through either direct observation or statistics. Few of us monitor the streets at night to do a count and what we see in the daytime can often be deceiving. Lots of people who have homes are still out on the streets during the day. Even the city seemed to be stymied by how to get a measure of homelessness and panhandling numbers during its Project Civil City efforts.

One group does try to keep a tab on what’s going on and that’s the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association. And its numbers show a dramatic fall in the number of people on the streets and even in how much panhandling is going on. As the association’s ED Charles Gauthier notes, when people are getting a place to sleep along with dinner and breakfast, they might still need to panhandle but not as much. You can read my full story in the Globe on this here.

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