We’ll try to find and post the results from different polls, but for now, here are the overall results posted on the city’s website.
Congratulations to all successful candidates.
We’ll try to find and post the results from different polls, but for now, here are the overall results posted on the city’s website.
Congratulations to all successful candidates.
Excellent information on this site. The questions are well-thought out and posed to all levels of leadership: mayor, council, and school board. It’s difficult to read….just hit the button at the bottom to increase the copy size. But well worth the time.
In an attempt to encourage more involvement in the political process, a number of Nanaimo organizations are thinking outside the box to get voters to the polls for Saturday’s (Nov. 19) municipal election.
The South End Community Association compiled community input from a 2008 blog on neighbourhood concerns and posed the top three to this year’s candidates for mayor and council on an online forum.
To read the rest of the article, click here.
Thank YOU News Bulletin!! After reading the Daily News article from today with the implication that a South End voter is apathetic, it was gratifying to be on your front page.
And local South Enders, this is your chance to have your say, to make a difference.
Historically, South End residents have been 2 separate communities living in one neighbourhood. Of course, there is a blurring of lines as many First nations folks do live off reserve and in the South End, and there are support services for them in the neighbourhood. We have been working over the past few years to build and strengthen our relationship with SFN; it has made us aware of some of the challenges that they face.
And so we asked this question:
3. How would you support our First Nations population in Nanaimo?
did not reply to the survey
did not reply to the survey
WOW – the best for last. The easiest (thank goodness) to answer. I seek a mandate from the people of Nanaimo to offer to help Chief White & the Snuneymuxw Band in any efforts they might want to make to improve access to Newcastle Island. This is the biggest part of my election platform. I want to do this more than anything, for Nanaimo, for our community, for all of us. I want to get to know our First Nation community, to listen and understand. I know that helping them get what they want, will be an important step in getting what I want too.
The City of Nanaimo enjoys a close and sincere relationship with SFN and has developed a comprehensive Protocol Agreement to that end. We continue to work on several joint ventures dealing with land and water and I can tell you that we put great importance in their needs.
Bill BestwickAbsolutely critical we treat our First Nations population with respect and support. We need to ensure the First Nations population, their history and culture are preserved and acknowledged. We need to communicate more effectively and more frequently to address local concerns and issues with all aspects of their needs including adequate fresh water supplies and sanitation. We need to work with all other agencies including the Federal, Provincial, District and Liason offerings are real and genuine. Listening to our neighbors, consulting and growing together through partnerships and relationship building is key.
Diane BrennanI would support the First Nations citizens in the region by establishing and maintaining relationships with FN organizations and community leaders.The City has a protocol agreement with the Snuneymuxw people signed several years ago. The agreement sets out ways and means to work together and a joint committee meets on a regular basis to discuss issues of mutual concern (short and long term). The agreement guides the city’s relationship with the Snuneymuxw. The City could begin discussions with Tillicum Lelum Friendship Centre as a first step towards establishing a relationship with urban aboriginal people.
The first Nation are not part of Nanaimo’s voting boundary. I’m not sure that’s a good thing. I myself am a halfbreed. My father was Haida, my mother German . My stepfather resented me until the end of his time. I would support them in any way possible.
Gord FullerAs with most things communication & mutual respect are key. Through my work and community involvement I have gotten to know many people of First Nation heritage. I have also built relationships with a number of councilors and the chief of Snuneymuxw First Nation. Asone of the poorer of the first nations groups in BC the city of Nanaimo needs to support the Snuneymuxw people in their efforts of seeking redress from Provincial and Federal Governments. Nanaimo needs to continue to cement its relationships with the Snuneymuxw and work towards making this a better community for all.
Diana JohnstoneI have enjoyed my role as a member of the Protocol Committee between SFN Council and Nanaimo City Council. I have learned a great deal about our First Nation Culture and have a great respect for their absolute rights as a nation. I would support them in a broad range of issues ranging from social development protection, enhancement of their unique culture, encouraging aboriginal tourism, and providing inclusiveness on city advisory or other committees. I would be supportive in any way possible to enable them to move forward and leave the pain of the past behind.
I was the Mayor who led the team who reconciled Nanaimo with our Snuneymuxw 1st Nations neighbours and partners. I am very proud of my excellent working relationship with Chiefs John Wesley and Viola Wyse. We signed the Community to Community Protocol Agreements and achieved solutions to many long standing problems. If elected, I intend to restore good relations with our Snuneymuxw friends.
Working with First Nations and asking how they would like us to support them. What is their vision for the City of Nanaimo and Snuneymuxw First Nations. We need to have healthy conversations, around economic opportunities, treaty settlements, health and education and any issues that are of importance to First Nations themselves. Municipal governments have a responsibility to work with senior governments to ensure all their citizens are respected and treated with dignity.
I am proud to say that I have an excellent working relationship with our Snuneymuxw First Nations. During my two terms on City Council (2002-2008) I worked very hard to bring both the councils, City and Snuneymuxw First Nations, to an open table discussion and the outcome of that discussion was both the parties signing the Memorandum of Understanding. In the recent past I have also been working very closely with Snuneymuxw First Nations as a Director of Nanaimo Port Authority to build a Cruise ship Terminal.
Bill McKayI would like to know what I can do to help our First Nations community settle their treaties and land claims. We as a community have work to do, projects to start, and a bright future to start working towards. We need to get going. Council needs to provide a friendly and inviting environment to outside investment that will benefit all of our citizens including our First Nations community.
I believe in working with all the community partners in Nanaimo and I look forward to continue to work with the Snuneymuxw First Nations on mutually beneficial projects.
To support our First Nations population to me means, first of all, that we must become much more aware of the challenges which our Snuneymuxw fellow citizens face on an almost daily basis. Once we have that understanding, we need to fully comprehend what the parameters for changing those challenges need to be. It is important to accept, for instance, that too many Snuneymuxw people live on too small a land base and will never be able to fulfill their economic aspirations unless that changes.
Equally important is that all of us take a trip to the library and learn about the Douglas Treaties, of which Chief Doug White lll speaks so eloquently and so often. Get to know this man better and see where he wants to lead his Nation ( http://www.dougwhiteforchief.com/ ) I am glad to presently sit on a Council which has a relationship of mutual respect and understanding with SFN, a relationship which bodes well for our combined futures!
I believe Council should work closely with the First Nations community in resolving their land treaty negotiations and assisting them in developing their lands so that they can build a substantial future for their people. This kind of cooperation would ensure both success for the First Nations People and the City of Nanaimo as projects move forward many First Nations people would be provided job opportunities. I also believe that City Council should enhance First Nations culture and art throughout the city so it can be showcased to the rest of the world.
A little framing first: We in the South End are absolutely ecstatic about our shiny new neighbourhood plan. Yes, it’s ambitious…over 100 action items. Capable Chris Sholberg and his team led us through the planning process, which they made very clear and easy. And we want to work with the city to help execute it. But the process toward that isn’t so clear. So the question we asked was:
2. The South End recently completed its Official Neighbourhood Plan. How do you see Council’s role in supporting its implementation?
did not reply to the survey
did not reply to the survey
Wow – Good document – I was aware of it and of some of the general reasons for neighbourhood plans. I reviewed this. I don’t know how to exactly address your question. I picked out a few things that jumped out at me. I hope that tells you more about me and what my intentions might be with respect to the Plan.
The Snuneymuxw, a Coast Salish people, have lived on the Nanaimo Harbour for thousands of years.
The South End’s industrial heritage is the city’s most significant. At the time of its closure in 1938, the No. 1 Mine, located at the foot of Milton Street, was the oldest operating coal mine in British Columbia. Over 18 million tons of coal had been removed from beneath Nanaimo’s Harbour. During its 55 years of operation, the mine was the city’s biggest employer.
5.4 Social Enrichment and Culture
Communication and Partnerships
12 Increased communication between the City, the neighbourhood, School District #68 and the Snuneymuxw First Nation for purposes of communication and partnership on servicing, security, community building, planning and arts / culture initiatives is encouraged.
5.5 Environmental Protection and Enhancement
Sustainable Building Technologies
8 Development of the Assembly Wharf / CP Lands as a model sustainable, green neighbourhood in a manner similar to Vancouver’s Southeast False Creek or Victoria’s Dockside Green is encouraged.
The 9 pages (approaching 100 items) of Section 7.3 Implementation Strategy are specific & measurable. They are designed to be tracked and reviewed.
I need guidance on this whole thing – it’s been a particularly good question. I am from the other end of town, so forgive me if I take some time to get up to speed on all areas. If elected Mayor, I will devote time to this and probably go along with what is clearly a well thought out and seasoned approach. I see no reason now to do anything other that is for sure. I support the OCP sincerely, this is part of that so I support it too.
The question that I feel obliged to ask is “How do you want me to see councils role with it? Get more involved, stay away. How has it been going?
I congratulate the South End for the successful completion of their “Official Community Plan”. I want to see the City of Nanaimo work collaboratively with the residents of the South End to assist them in meeting their goals. The City has great respect for those resident associations who see the need for change and are prepared to work with us on developing a strategy for success.
I believe that it is councils responsibility to work with south end to make sure the plan comes to realization. There needs to be open communication and transparency about the plan, and making sure that there is a timeline in order for it to be achieved.
It is imperative Council continue to build relationship and support the SECA in advancing its priorities and initiatives. Through policy implementation and cooperation with the stakeholders businesses and residents continue to reach agreement and consensus on residential development and imrovements.
City Council should use this plan as an important tool in creating mid-term goals for the city as a whole. It should be supported in every way, UNLESS any particular part is not in the best interests of the community as a whole.
By following the January 2011 implementation plan for short, medium, and long term actions.
By keeping a careful eye on the city’s budget to ensure funds available for implementation; and
By maintaining a reasonable relationship with the planning department and with the mayor and council.
I have read your comprehensive community plan. As a councilor I would most certainly vote on all facets of green transportation. My hot rod bike is the way I personally get around. I love it and plan to never again own a car. Another reason I can live within my means. Safe cycling is the way of the future and I don’t mean share the road with the car.
I would encourage many more small business’s bringing more vibrancy and self sufficiency to your area. Growing organic local food big big time as the most important economic development is my no. one platform so grow grow grow!!!
Council must take active participation in working to implement all neighbourhood plans. It can do this through ongoing communication with neighbourhood groups and encouraging staff participation with these groups as well. Items in the plan are comprised of those the Neighbourhood can accomplish, those Neighbourhood and City work on together and those that are largely the responsibility of the City. Ongoing communication will be key to their implementation.
The first way of supporting the Plan is to become informed about it and its Ten Guiding Principles. I know there is an extensive Implementation Strategy and as stated “The Strategy identifies actions, timing and responsibilities of the City….” So, if the City supports the Neighbourhood Plan it will encourage its implementation with its actions at the Committee and Council level.
City Council must maintain open communication with SECA throughout the entire range of implementation from immediate to ongoing. Council, along with city planners should be supportive to help ensure that the projects in progress are moving forward as anticipated. They should always be mindful that the implementation is in line with the Official Community Plan and other community projects ensuring connectivity, and that consultation is ongoing.
Council members should take an active role in attending SECA meetings (when possible) and perhaps carry out an annual review with the neighbourhood to maintain interest, keep up to speed with accomplishments and be supportive of actions that still need to be identified.
Neighbourhood plans are the fundimental bases for our official community plan. Supporting the visions of the community process by the development of policy using Bylay 4500 as an example.
I was the Mayor that got all our work in Plan Nanaimo actually adopted as Nanaimo’s Official Community Plan in 1993. It gave for the first time special significance to Neighbourhood Plans. I was particularly gratified to see the diligence and public participation your neighbourhood undertook in developing your Neighbourhood Plan. Council is to be guided by that component within the context of the whole bylaw. As always, elected officials must represent the greater good of the whole community over special or local interests if there is a conflict of direction or guidance.
The ONP fits nicely and complimentary into the present global OCP. As we move into an inclusive Visioning process and formulation of the look, feel and flavour of the Nanaimo of the future that the people of Nanaimo want to see – then these plans ONP and OCP will be critical in the revision of each to reflect the Visioning outcomes and subsequent implementation plan, schedule and budgeting.
The South End has been very proactive for a good number of years. The citizens have worked hard to build a better South End and we have! I will work with the South End, and support it’s implementation, within the guidelines of our OCP. Neighbourhood Associations play a vital role in our city. I would like to see all neighbourhoods throughout our city form associations, as the building blocks for our vision for the future. When I was a School Trustee, each trustee was assigned a set of schools to be the official Trustee Liason. We could have a similar program with Councillors.
We spend enormous amount of time on our official Neighbourhood Community Plans. After they have been completed, at present we don’t have proper process to implement these plans.
We need to be more assertive in bringing these neighbourhood plans to be successful. When I am elected I want to work with neighhourhoods and city staff on setting a program to have these plans implemented.
As I stated in the March by-election, it will be Council’s role to provide an environment that will be welcoming to private capital. A small local developer who is building in our area, and who has dealt with many cities in past stated that Nanaimo is one of the WORST communities he has ever had to work with in an effort to move one of his projects forward. We need to welcome investment, work with the neighbourhoods to ensure the type of development is appropriate, and move the projects along as quickly as possible.
Communication between Council and Nanaimo neighbourhood associations, such as SECA, is key. Nanaimo City Council needs to incorporate Neighbourhood Plans into the Official Community Plan so it has the full support it deserves.
It was a great source of satisfaction for me to have been able to help facilitate the South End’s Neighbourhood Plan. Our Official Community Plan speaks of these plans as ” building blocks of our municipal society” and I fully agree with that description. Council’s role in implementing this plan has many aspects and varies from assisting to maintain the character and livability of your neighbourhood to providing access to neighbourhood service levels to increasing housing choices and a host of other objectives in between………
The South End Community Plan will be transformational. I believe that neighbourhood plans form an integral part of the Official Community Plan. It is not practical for any one City Councillor to fully grasp all the concerns of every neighbourhood and Neighbourhood Plans can facilitate the decision-making process for City Council.
As a city Councillor I would push to bring this Plan forward as expediently as possible to help the South End move ahead as a distinct community in Nanaimo. The potential of the South End to become one of the most vibrant parts of Nanaimo is incredible.
Council should work closely with the South End residents to assure that when they make decisions around land use it is within the communities desires and also enhances the vision of the city as a whole.
Published: Wednesday, November 09, 2011
A single controversial issue like lowbarrier housing can sway the outcome of the election if not enough Nanaimo voters head to the polls, political experts say.
The low-barrier housing issue, which only ranked as a distraction heading into this civic election, has become a divisive topic for Nanaimo city candidates and neighbourhood groups.
Residents that have formed quasi-political groups in the north end are looking to use power in numbers to not only affect the issue, but the outcome of the election.
We asked this question, below, because as a diverse and inclusive neighbourhood, we have often struggled with an overconcentration of low barrier housing. Perhaps our most well-known facility is the Balmoral (18 residents) run by CMHC. But we also have the New Hope Centre on our northern boundary (houses about 40 residents, overnite and short-term). Beyond that are the non-supported operations where the monitoring can often be more by the RCMP than any staff members: former hotels and motels throughout our neighbourhood, including the Value Lodge and the Newport Hotel include another 60+ people. Then there are the slum landlords renting out substandard housing.
Given the fact that we potentially have well over 100, perhaps closer to 200 hard-to-house folks in our neighbourhood, we’re naturally curious about how other neighbourhoods respond to supporting those who need help. So we posed the following question to candidates:
1. Should services and resources to the disadvantaged be spread throughout the city or concentrated in one part of the city? What is your position regarding the Uplands Supportive Housing Project?
did not reply to the survey
did not reply to the survey
Yes, spread out – there are good reasons why this benefits i) the tenants, ii) neighbourhoods & community.
i) Tenants: Various providers specialize in different segments of the homeless population. A variety of geographic locations facilitate suitable options for the entire homeless population.
ii) Neighbourhoods: Meeting social responsibilities comes with rewards on a neighbourhood & community level -emotional, spiritual & financial – benefits accrue to those that step up, get involved and find solutions. The mechanisms that are set up, the processes including neighbourhood groups & connections also facilitate other sports, cultural and educational efforts – as well as funding for other initiatives becomes easier through these organizations and relationships.
I am in favour of exactly what the city proposes on its website. I started the petition in favour of it.
Services and resources to the disadvantaged must be spread equally throughout our community. Those in need of these essential services clearly come from all areas of our City and to suggest otherwise is simply incorrect. It follows that the logical sites for the provision of social housing are to be found throughout our City and not in a single geographic area. That is the strategy that Mayor and Council have followed.
I am in favour of the establishment of supportive housing on the Uplands Road site.
I believe services and resources for the disadvantaged should be spread throughout the entire city. Concentration in one area leads to many issues, and puts a burden on one area of the community. It is our responsibility to make sure we work together to help people who are not able to help themselves, it has to be a shared responsibility.
In regards to the supportive housing on Uplands, our city council did not provide enough communication or information to residents in the community and there should have been a dialogue with the residents, but I believe we cannot leave our homeless on the streets.
I am completely in favor of a provision of services made available to the disadvantaged members of our City. Currently there are numerous offerings of services from the Public and Private sector spread throughout the City Centre and reaching into many neighborhoods. The Provincial Government contributes subsidies to approximately 1700 families in the City of Nanaimo approaching nearly 7 plus million dollars annually.
The services and resources necessary for the disadvantaged must be made to be convenient, accessible and need specific to the clientele. That said, resources must be readily available in locations which is critical to the success of the operation and client. The most responsible thing Government can do is provide the necessary services through examination and process of site selection, size of operation and ease of access to everyday necessities. Providing the sites are optimum for the intended use and researched appropriately, I would be in favor of dispersal beyond a concentrated area.
The intended use must be well researched, examined and consulted with the area most impacted. The client services must be conveniently accessible. The size of the operation must be modest to suit the property and neighborhood, and in the best interest of the clients success. The Tillicum Tse Lelum model of Medium to High Barrier for Elders (Seniors) and youth at risk in an 18 unit complex is most desirous or a Fairway Woods model for Adults of 55 plus for this location.
After doing a fair bit of research from Nanaimo to as far away as Detroit Michigan where I connected by email with Dr. Glaster, Prof. of Urban Affairs, I found that distribution throughout the city was considered the better way for supportive housing. Otherwise, a concentrated area can be ignored and isolated and more likely to become problematic and turn into a ghetto. Those needing support are more likely to feel safer and take more pride in their situation if surrounded by hopefully friendly and helpful neighbours. Also of critical importance though was the size of the project in relation to supportive staff available. The smaller the ratio of staff to tenants the more liklihood of success. I support the project going into the Uplands sight – ONLY if there is adequate supportive staff for 24/7 care and treatment.
Yes, people who are marginalized in society need to be welcome in all areas of Nanaimo. Diverse neighbourhoods are a sign of a healthy city.
I fully support the Uplands Housing Project.
I love the restoration and pride I see in the South end. You are without doubt the most interesting up and coming neighborhood in the city. I recognize your concerns as a lot falls on your shoulders being the closest to where the food and other resources for the poor are situated. Personally I feel these resources would be better spread throughout the city. It is important that all citizens partake in helping our disadvantaged. It is everyones responsibility.
Concerning the Uplands supportive housing, too many in one place is not the best answer. I am happy that these people are receiving help, however, it is not fair to them to be foisted into a neighborhood that is in such fear of them. Integrating them into smaller houses throughout the city would be a happier answer for all concerned.
did not reply to the survey
did not reply to the survey
Poverty and homelessness are not limited to any one area and the concentrating of services contributes to the ghettoization of areas where services are concentrated. For over a decade I have been advocating for the decentralization of services which actually became a City Policy a few years ago.
Like services Supportive Housing needs to be spread out through the community. I have been the strongest and most outspoken person working to accomplish this. Key to this, but lacking to an extent in the recent Uplands and Dufferin debates, is early communication with the neighbourhoods. Educating through early communication could have gone a long way to making the neighbourhoods accepting of the projects.
The services and resources often follow the needs of the disadvantaged and for practical purposes tend to be centralized. But ghettoizing these services and accommodations can lead to some negative impact on the community. I believe services should be spread out but the issue of availability to those in need is probably an issue.
I support the Uplands Supportive Housing Project. There are no perfect solutions. The site addresses the idea of fairness in that no one particular area of the City has all or most of the Supportive Housing, inclusiveness, site infrastructure readiness, access to transit and acceptable zoning. The area is an area of multi- family units and Community Services so it is a suitable location.
Absolutely! We share Nanaimo with many diverse people, many who are struggling with poverty or physical/mental illnesses. We must share our city space with EVERYONE and they should be welcome in ANY neighbourhood. The South End Community Association is to be congratulated for welcoming the opportunity to be a complete and caring neighbourhood. You understand the value of addressing homelessness and have said, “Yes in my Backyard.”
I wholeheartedly support the Uplands Supportive Housing Project. Perhaps Council should have communicated this project better to the Uplands Neighbourhood, however, when transferring homes from Boundary and Dufferin we were unable to announce the location earlier. The site is chosen and we as a council must now work with the neighbourhood to dispel some of their fears. Your President, Doug, has been very helpful in this regard.
Without good quality housing, many people cycle between jails, hospital, shelters and streets, costing governments far more than the price of actually providing supportive housing. Over the years, there have been studies done that show the positive impact Social Housing Projects has on neighbourhoods. We can and will make this project work with the help of the social agencies, RCMP, BC Housing, VIEA and YIMB’YS. (Yes in my backyard)
Since the 1990’s I have been involved in social, health and economic issues I support the concept and implementation of our homeless strategies and initiatives like “streets to homes” and www.stophomelessness.ca. The cost for not addressing the issue of homelessness with dignity and compassion is proven to be way higher, ie “million dollar murry”. I advocate for an inclusive community that shares our social responsibilities.
As the Mayor who spent years pleading for government support to solve this terrible problem you can be assured I will support fulfilling the Homelessness Agreement I signed on behalf of Nanaimo in 2008 (including commitments to public consultation). It is shocking how it has been so delayed in implementation.
Canadians, all Canadians, deserve safe, secure shelter. It is essential for quality living and fulfilling a productive life. Some of our fellow citizens have become homeless for many reasons, including drug and alcohol addiction, mental illness, and poverty. Intense public initiatives have led to diverse efforts to solve, or reduce homelessness.
Much effort by our citizens, community partners, and the current and past City Councils, on behalf of all Nanaimo, has been made to partner with government, non-profits, and private parties to improve services and resources to combat homelessness.
As a four-year member of the Premier’s Task Force on Homelessness, I support using the medically appropriate methods and public health initiatives the BC government determines effective in fighting homelessness.
I am grateful for, and support, the years of research, countless volunteer hours, and multiple participants who worked to produce Nanaimo’s Homelessness Strategy and Plan.
While homelessness may only be visible in some locations, it damages our whole community. We have a responsibility to work co-operatively to fix it as a community.
Once the Uplands site contract tender, set by BC, is awarded in early November, and all project details are available, I support ongoing full disclosure for the proposed facilities, services, and resources at open public meetings, so everyone can hear the same thing at the same time, ask pertinent questions, and judge for themselves if adequate safety and security is provided. Not just for the housed homeless, but for their prospective neighbours as well. Nothing will change until there is trust and there can be no trust without full disclosure, or if questions go unanswered, or lies are circulated without challenge.
Failure to act on homelessness while we have the assistance offered by senior government will only make a bad situation worse. I am confident most Nanaimoites want to work together to resolve this now.
Not necessarily; there are advantages to having services consolidated; for example: consolidation could provide access to a wider variety of services in a single location or area; and, yield fixed cost savings to service providers. Many challenges to access to services can be overcome with a comprehensive Transportation system that connects Nanaimo seamlessly from within and beyond to nearby larger centres for access to an even greater variety of services and resources depending upon the need.
The Uplands Supportive Housing Project is a complex argument that is part of a greater program to find solutions to homelessness. There is evidence to suggest that the processes laid out in the MOU memorandum of Understanding between the city of Nanaimo and BC Housing have not been followed correctly; furthermore, the document titled Nanaimo’s response to Homelessness action plan which also stipulates actions and processes were not followed correctly. Additionally, site selection of Uplands was not part of the original MOU. It has become a selected site only following a failure to find community acceptance with a previous site that was part of the MOU.
It is argued that this change of location was done without Council adherence to protocols of both of these documents. Subsequent to this location selection; a community push back has occurred citing that the location is inappropriate due to its proximity to a seniors centre, Schools and vulnerable neighbourhood and businesses; I am compelled to agree. It
is seen as inappropriate given the size of the project (40 units), the target tenant population to be housed and the predictable negative consequences of having a Hybrid-wet-house facility in this location; or, any location. It is important to note that: The opponents of this site selection and the intended hybrid-wet-house facility are not opponents to Supportive housing. To further exacerbate the issue the inter-changed use of terminology such as “low-barrier” also know as “wet-house” and “Supportive housing” (non-wet house) in the same context has led to a great deal of confusion. My conclusion is that this particular project is flawed from many angles both governmental and academic.
The governmental failures include: An absence of Due-diligence and not following process protocols with regard to community consultation of the Uplands project and rezoning of land. The Academic flaws range from Clinical and Consumer viewpoints. The Clinical view is that abstinence is a pre-condition of tenancy and access to programs; whereas the Consumer view is of a Housing-First model then following a carefully laid out plan of recovery which includes education, prevention, treatment and support matched to the severity of the addiction or mental illness (single or dual diagnosis). Indeed, there is little provision in either view of homeless persons or families that do not fit into an illness category.
Further to this complexity is that the centre is to be operated by a non-profit society that will function at arm’s-length from the City of Nanaimo and would largely determine the target tenancy – this is a step which removes civic control over the tenancy status from the City. This is a negative aspect in which the City of Vancouver is currently struggling. Even the global project plan laid out by the BC Government has its critics; and, from an unlikely source; Dr. Galster – expert in the field and housing proponent accuses the BC Government of misinterpreting his data and warns that this plan of large multi-unit complexes with little supervision or treatment/support plans in place for community re-integration puts tenants in danger of re-victimization and the surrounding community for criminal nuisance.
After weighing the facts of this project’s flaws from the many perspectives; it is apparent that it requires a serious re-think. Therefore, my position is such that: because of the human destructive nature of wet-house housing (a.k.a Hospice) I cannot support this concept anywhere; ever. I truly believe we are our Brother’s Keeper – we can do better – the David Moirs of the world deserve better.
With a Housing-First and Supportive Housing model that follows the recommendations of Drs. Tsemberis and Galster and associated subject matter experts in this field. Recommendations that include fewer units in any one location (12 or less) and a community scattered approach. This is a housing model that I support; and, it has proven to have remarkable successes. Adopting this program strategy; and, attacking causal factors in homelessness will demonstrate Leadership in homelessness solutions and will yield long-term benefits for all of Nanaimo as well as showcase social innovation.
Caring for those that need our support the most is the responsibility of the whole city. As Chair of the Social Planning Advisory Committee, I know we have been working on homelessness in Nanaimo for almost a decade. After many years of workshops, the formation of the Nanaimo Working Group on Homelessness, an Action Plan was developed. The participants included VIU, BC Housing, RCMP, Safer Nanaimo Working Group, DNP (now known as DNBIA ) Neighbourhood Associations, representatives from local social service agencies, homeless individuals who shared their stories. You can see that we have had many conversations with citizens. We had open houses to present Nanaimo’s Response to Homelessness. The City has tried to be as open and transparent as it can, living within the restrictions of the Provincial protocol, as the Province is funding the building of these homes, and the support that will be provided, 24/7. Anyone can view this document on the City Website. It was determined from the beginning that it is healthy for a city to share for the care of all.
I support the Uplands Supportive Housing Project and will do my best to ease the fears and negative emotions surrounding this project. There is nothing to fear, but fear itself.
During my two terms on City Council we had changed the zoning by-law to allow the Supportive Housing throughout the city. I personally don’t believe that the Supportive Housing be concentrated in one part of the city. My belief is that before we choose the sites where Supportive Housing is to be built we should have conversation and consultation with the residents and businesses of the neighbourhood.
At present I am not in favour of the Uplands location. I would have been in favour if neighbourhood and surrounding businesses had been fully consulted and open houses were held with transparency and decision not be made behind closed doors. My belief is that when people feel that they are a part of conversation they respond positively and we can build better relationships.
Services should be provided where they are needed. If we have population in the north, south, or central parts that need help, they should get the help they need in their neighbourhood. I am fully behind the Supportive Housing Initiative. It appears that we have chosen a model that comes with its own set of challenges, however.
I am not in favor of Bowen Road, Dufferin, or Uplands locations, UNTIL we determine if the operator chosen and the type of client is determined. It appears that between the Homeless Action Committee, the City, and BC Housing took the lazy way out when choosing locations. Instead of carefully choosing sites that are appropriate for the type of housing needed in the neighbourhood, they simply plunked money on to “available inventory” to quote John Horn. I would encourage not putting the Bowen Road site investment on hold. That simply puts the neighbourhood around that site in limbo for years. Let’s take the Province’s money and find a proper location for that investment and get on with it!
It is important for the success of every community to care for every member of Nanaimo. All neighbourhoods have schools, seniors, and children; this is what makes up a community. To fear a demographic based on a subjective criteria is shameful and it is obvious further education for those opposed is needed. We live in Nanaimo not South or North Nanaimo and I believe the Housing First initiative should have placement throughout Nanaimo. It’s time to move people up not out.
did not reply to the survey
Of course, services and resources to the disadvantaged should be spread throughout the City. Mental health and substance issues, among others, know no borders in our municipality and it is only fair that the responsibility of dealing with these is shared equally by all.
I am in favour of both the Dufferin and Upland locations as sites where Nanaimo’s ambitious Housing First projects can come to fruition and, contrary to the beliefs of some, I do not believe that these facilities will be operating to the detriment of the neighbourhoods in which they are planned.
could not be contacted
I believe that support services should be spread throughout the City as homelessness and addiction are not isolated to any one particular neighbourhood. I also believe that not concentrating services in one specific area (and thus avoiding the creation of a ghetto) is crucial to at-risk citizens’ re-integration. By spreading the services throughout the community, we can also help teach our children that the underpriviledged in our society are not evil second-class citizens and that they deserve to have another chance and equal access.
Although I do support the concept of a supportive-housing facility and its proposed location, I do not believe that the community was properly involved and educated during the initial stages of the process and I believe this unfortunate approach has yet to be rectified. I therefore believe Uplands residents do have the right to express their concerns now. Until proper consultation occurs and the community has truly had their input heard and their concerns appropriately dealt regarding this project I would support that the Uplands supportive housing project not proceed at this time.
I believe that services and resources should be spread throughout the city as this would make it easier for those providing the services to control the situation as they would be dealing with smaller numbers.
I feel the Uplands Supportive Housing Project may be too big. I would be more supportive of smaller projects placed in more areas throughout the city rather than a few large ones. We need to have the support of the communities when building these homes.