Vancouver slumlord George Wolsey failed to show up for a legal hearing on Monday morning, but his lawyer insists he isn't trying to evade justice...
"I think there is a fear of change, a fear of change that is ungrounded in any rational apprehension about what will happen. We accept at some level that the whole prohibition policy is a total failure, yet in some other part of our brain we are afraid of change because we worry that society would just turn itself into a collection of drug-addled morons."
I'm hoping that whoever takes over for the executive director -- and for his other cronies who believe in their own sense of righteous importance and entitlement -- will look again at these programs with clearer eyes and sharper minds. I truly hope we will soon see some positive changes in this long-running DTES agency that has served a lot of needy people.
The key issue is whether the heart of Vancouver's Downtown Eastside should remain a low-income precinct with a high concentration of shelters, social housing, and community services -- essentially "walled off" from the rest of the city -- or should it become a more normalized community with a broader range of households and housing choices, including condominiums, restaurants and shops catering to the entire city population?