HOMELESSNESS - WE CAN'T AFFORD TO IGNORE IT
The Metro Vancouver Mayor’s Task Force on Homelessness co-chaired by Mayor Nicole Read and Mayor Gregor Robertson released their much awaited report yesterday, February 27, 2017. The report identifies the current state of the homelessness crisis, pinpoints actions to address this crisis, outlines a plan or position paper and most importantly examines the face of homelessness across the region.
“The research unequivocally demonstrates a complete system-wide failure in the social services network designed to assist the most vulnerable in the region,” said Maple Ridge Mayor Nicole Read, who helped lead the effort with Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson.
About the Task Force:
The Metro Vancouver Regional Homelessness Task Force was struck in November 2016, in response to historic levels of homelessness throughout the region, and the urgent need for systemic improvements from all levels of government and the non-profit sector to manage this crisis. The Task Force sought data from member municipalities to quantify the scope of the problem, including financial costs, best practices in mitigating homelessness and practical reforms to reverse the trend.
Local governments play a critical role in responding to homeless populations in their municipalities by partnering in community programs, such as cold weather shelters, or supporting assisted housing and delivering affordable housing initiatives. Provincial and Federal government ministries, non-profit organizations, Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health Authorities also have critical roles to play in addressing homelessness.
The Metro Vancouver Task Force is calling on the BC government to take immediate action, with three distinct goals:
- To prevent pathways into homelessness
- To serve those who are currently homeless
- To create pathways out of homelessness
Read the full report here.