Wait­ing for hous­ing

Metro Canada (Vancouver) - - NEWS - Jen St. De­nis

Peo­ple who have been living in a tent city in East Van­cou­ver for the past four months say the city has turned off their wa­ter and they’ve been left with no way to cook food fol­low­ing the con­fis­ca­tion of a bar­be­cue and propane on Nov. 7. And while the city an­nounced the tent city site at 1141 Franklin St. will likely be a lo­ca­tion for a tem­po­rary mod­u­lar hous­ing build­ing, res­i­dents said they have yet to re­ceive any in­for­ma­tion about that plan.

“I un­der­stand it’s the job of the fire depart­ment to make sure peo­ple aren’t burned alive in the tent city, but these are grown adults,” said JJ Re­ich, of the Al­liance Against Dis­place­ment.

City staff de­nied wa­ter had been cut off but said a worker would be sent to check. The city is en­cour­ag­ing res­i­dents to go to emer­gency shel­ters.

Jonathan Gormick, a spokesper­son for Van­cou­ver Fire and Res­cue Ser­vice, said propane and stoves were re­moved af­ter re­peated warn­ings. A woman living in a tent in Chilli­wack was badly burned this week when her tent caught fire from can­dles.

Ward Fer­gu­son has lived at Sugar Moun­tain for four months. Be­fore that, he set up his tent ev­ery night at Op­pen­heimer Park, and had to pack up all his stuff ev­ery morn­ing. He said Sugar Moun­tain is safer. “I can’t do the shel­ters. I’m re­ally claus­tro­pho­bic.”

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