The topic of homelessness is a hotly contested one in Vancouver, especially for those residing in the downtown core.
Plans for two homeless shelters have been at the forefront of public meetings lately, and even prompted the North False Creek Business & Residents Association to start an online petition asking for the city to get rid of them.
"In our region of False Creek North between the Granville and Burrard bridges, there are hundreds of families who rely on pre-schools and day cares in the area," it states. "It is inappropriate and dangerous that two huge facilities housing a high risk population be placed adjacent to schools, playgrounds, and community amenities."
But now a counter petition has been started. It calls for the removal of "the Selfish Yuppies from the City of Vancouver."
"Now that there are so many yuppies in the city, it is becoming unsafe to be poor here. At every turn, yuppies threaten our housing stability, ruthlessly taking over every neighbourhood they can under the premise of improvement or cleaning things up," the petition states.
The conversation falls around two recently opened shelters.
The first, a temporary housing facility for the residents of the now-defunct Oppenheimer Park homeless camp, is located in an old restaurant on Pacific Boulevard; the second, at an old Quality Inn site on Howe Street, is a 157-room transitional space, reports CBC News. Residents are unhappy with the lack of public consultation before both homes were opened, according to the original petition.
But the new one argues that too much emphasis is put on the well-off.
"Mayor Robertson and Vision Vancouver, please rethink your strategy of catering to developers and yuppies," it states. "We need real community and that starts with housing for all."
Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson told CBC's "The Early Edition" that he plans to improve communication with residents but that he will also keep moving forward homeless shelters.
What do you think? Let us know in the comments.
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