NEWS

Oppenheimer homeless camp injunction hearing resumes

10/06/2014 10:25 EDT | Updated 12/06/2014 05:59 EST
The City of Vancouver will be back in court today seeking an injunction to evict the homeless campers in Oppenheimer Park on the city's Downtown Eastside.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson says he looks forward to the judge's decision.

"Our priority remains on health and safety of people at Oppenheimer Park. Our police and fire continue to work there daily supported by city staff," said Robertson.

"We're going to ensure people are going to get access to housing and shelter. As the winter approaches, that's the key issue here, and we have to make sure people are safe."

But lawyers from Pivot Legal Society who are representing the homeless campers say the encampment is seen as safer than the shelter and housing options offered by the city and are arguing the campers have a constitutional right to to camp in the park.

The homeless campers began living in Oppenheimer Park in the summer to highlight a lack of affordable housing.

In late September the city asked the court for a legal injunction to allow it to move in and dismantle the camp because of health and safety reasons.

Last week Justice Jennifer Duncan gave the campers and their lawyers a few days to get their legal arguments ready to fight the injunction.

Both sides are expected to make their case in court today in Vancouver.

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