Good day folks! Hope this post finds you all in good health and spirits.
I asked Micro Housing Steering Committee members Solomon Lindsay and Graeme Bristol to join me this am and meet with Carol James. Here is a photo of Pete who I met up with at Our Place. We have chatted off and on over this last year. He has joined our Steering Committee today, I love his energy and ideas, he is wanting to be involved and I am happy he has joined us. You’ll see him at the next meeting and, he loves the idea of us meeting at FNB tree, let me know when those meetings start up, I may be able to join you again by then! I am still taking my health break and yet, still able to enjoy this outreach work for now.
He and I and Michelle had a great chat at Our Place regarding the housing crisis many are in. Managers are still using police to evict tenants and that needs some attention. We all praised TAPS for their ongoing work regarding View Towers and wonder what the heck is going on there re: occupancy rates so high and homeless numbers on rise? Gentrification gone real bad!
That’s Pete, Solomon, me kym hothead, Carol and Graeme. I could not decide which photo was the best so I used both!
We had a great meeting and I opened by bringing up the need for a National Housing Strategy to be drafted by the NDP well before the election. We asked for her help in this endeavor and she is definitely wanting to help. She stated she will meet with Murray Rankin and David Eby in regards to what we brought forward. Our CTEHV will be having Murray Rankin come once again soon and I look forward to that meeting as well.
She also had just come from a meeting with Marianne Alto, we are all really busy and active and listening to all sides, trying very much to calm the alarm bells of fear…
We also need to meet up with NDP housing person: David Eby and ask him to lead in getting this much needed National Housing Strategy written and that it must include social housing getting built at 30% of income. We the people will be getting out there and help educate the public regarding this housing crisis and what is needed. We need 10 thousand built each year to begin to deal, that is a lot of jobs folks, let’s get on that one!
Please join us when we post our schedule for Leafleting and Stands For Social Housing. After all, an election is coming and Carol as well as others agree: the time is NOW for action.
I shared with her the Diverse Social Housing Proposal I have been bottom lining and how I will be hosting a panel in Montreal in November for The Canadian Alliance to End Homelessness conference entitled:
“Thinking outside the box: alternative and self-managed housing solutions.
Some research cites problems with mainstream rental housing including distance from services, isolation from previous networks of informal support, inadequate housing conditions, difficulties in “fitting into” mainstream expectations of housing, and problematic relationships with private market landlords—as key reasons for returns to homelessness for some participants in Housing First programs.” I hope to keep costs down by bringing the presentation Mark Lakeman did (However, I have invited him cause, ya never know, would be great to have him there!) and have mostly lived experience who are living it now alongside other lived experience like myself share in why Tent Cities, Micro Housing and other alternatives can help save lives, build a community which can lobby government and get our needs met.
For me, this is Harm Reduction for homeless while the housing strategy gets written. Many folks fall thru the cracks and this is where tent cities and micro housing villages can help.
Solomon Lindsay is a Vic High student and he shared his interest in architecture and is involving his school to help build micro housing homes, he is currently an active steering committee member. He shared a lot and I look forward to what the students will come up with, I guess Carol helped start that program at VIC High!
Graeme Bristol shared his experience as an architect and how this project is one he is happy to be involved in, shared how the tenants themselves are a big part of how the homes will be built, how we are currently creating a non profit and are determined to help insure self governance with much community support to do so. He and other architects as well as homeless who are on steering Committee like Tony have been going to Agencies and presenting and listening to homeless and gleaning what they want. I was able to attend 2 presentations at Our Place and enjoyed them a lot!
Pete is currently homeless and was very keen on this project and will gladly be involved in meetings as well as Stands For Social Housing! He and I spoke of leafleting outside of Our Place and Rock Bay Landing to reach out to homeless as well as housed.
He shared a tragic story with Solomon as we left together of a homeless man who stabed himself to death. He suffered greatly and was staying at the Rock Bay Landing shelter. This allegedly occurred about 4 months ago, such a tragedy and adds to the passion we all share on why Social Housing is critical, that any Harm Reduction is needed NOW.
I want to thank everyone who is helping with this project, we all have a role in production and what better time than now to relieve the pain and suffering of our homeless family members, which is absolutely unnecessary!
If not now, when?
kym hothead hines
VIMEO: Transform Homelessness Advocacy WAtch for feature Taking The Fall and Rising, and short film Speakers Corner Booth.