From: Alison Acker <alisonacker@shaw.ca>

Date: August 13, 2016 9:45:19 AM PDT

To: “Letters (Times­Colonist)” <letters@timescolonist.com>

Subject: thank you, tent city

InTentCityLearnedForged

A big thank­ you ­but not goodbye ­to all the residents of InTent City. To Mud and Anna and Bones and all the dreamers and organizers, the wounded and the lay-
abouts, the protesters and just the survivors.

You taught us that the street people are such much more than victims.

Remember, these “throw­aways” were sharp enough to find a loop­hole in anti-
camping laws.  They survived the rain and cold. They found lawyers. They shamed the authorities into providing toilets and showers.  They welcomed in the Rev. Al, the Anglican Cathedral, the Quakers, the Unitarians, Together Against Poverty and all kinds of supporters to join in daily talks around the “sacred fire”.

They dealt with the Fire Chief and police and the press. Sure, the camp was not Camelot. Over the summer there were conflicts and overdoses. Understandably, their neighbors put up with problems they had never expected.

Finally, they forced the province to open up its housing coffers to house 300 people who would still be stuck on lists of applicants, ­ some still on the list for 12 years if there had been no Intent City.

You’ll still be hearing from Bones and Anna and Mud.  New residents to the Johnson Street building have already demanded the right to name their own home.  And if there is to be an art exhibit in the Royal B.C. Museum and some sort of memorial for Tent City, they will be having their say. And why not? They have proved to the world that the poor have skills, courage and rights.

We are all citizens.

alison Acker, 1607, 620 Toronto St. Victoria V8V 1P7. 250 480 4854

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