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(en) City Announces Homeless Action Plan: Garbage Bags and "Dear Camper" Letters

From "Friends of the Woodwards Squat" <violetta_sera@hotmail.com>
Date Sun, 24 Nov 2002 05:25:51 -0500 (EST)

      A - I N F O S  N E W S  S E R V I C E

City Announces Homeless Action Plan: Garbage Bags and "Dear Camper" Letters
23 November 2002

This afternoon the City of Vancouver announced how they will proceed with 
the injunction, sort of.

They sent a City social worker to distribute large black garbage bags to 
residents of the Woodwards Squat with a short letter addressed "Dear 

The letter is dated 23 November and states that "The City is preparing to 
clear the furniture and tents from the sidewalk, sometime over the next 
week. It is important now, [sic] that you make a plan, [sic] about where you 
will go. Please gather your possessions, and be packed, and ready."

Many people at the Squat were insulted and angry when the social worker 
handed out garbage bags. As anyone even vaguely familiar with the Woodwards 
Squat would know, the City of Vancouver destroyed everyone's possessions in 
City garbage trucks last time around (on Sunday 22 September between 11:00 
and 11:30 p.m.) and they are likely to attempt it again in the final days of 
the outgoing City Council regime. The suggestion that people's clothes, 
blankets, identification, and other personal items belong in garbage bags 
is, of course, a difficult one for even the most hard-hearted to accept.

The vagueness of the City's threat, which fails to specify a time or date 
for the second street "cleansing" or what the homeless should be "ready" for 
once they have packed, has led a few people to leave already. Some have left 
the safety of the group and gone back to the dangerous alleys, underpasses 
and parks by themselves. Neither the City of Vancouver nor the incoming COPE 
Council have made any effort to prevent police violence next week by 
formally requesting that VPD Chief Constable Jamie Graham exercise his 
discretionary power in this case.

The Woodwards Squat Emergency Response Team will issue a statement at noon 
during the support rally on Monday 25 November at Abbott and Hastings. 
Please attend: bring cameras and vehicles.

A copy of the injunction order is posted at:

Friends of the Woodwards Squat

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