St Andrew’s-Wesley United Church was packed last night for the Mayoral debate on homelessness- I was heartened to see so many people as passionate about this most important issue.
The event has been well reported today, with a full description at Frances Bula’s blog, and so I need not go into detail about the exchange. I must remark,however, at how shocked I was at Peter Ladner’s lack of understanding about the issue. He has been trying to make himself out to be the experienced leader yet he wasn’t clear on the details, assuming, for instance, that there is a yearly update on homelessness in Vancouver when there is not.
I was also disturbed by Peter Ladner’s attitude toward the DTES, saying yesterday that the neighbourhood should be "normalized". This is a man who clearly does not want a Vancouver for everyone.
Gregor spoke well on the issue and he reflected some of what COPE seeks to do in addressing housing and homelessness. I participated in a press conference with him today to release COPE’s Homelessness Strategy, which you can see here: