Encampments might be endless
When Victoria city councillors meet to discuss falling revenues, hopefully delaying non-urgent capital projects (like new bike lanes, a “nice to have” from any perspective) will be a nobrainer.
Then there are the ever-increasing costs of endlessly moving encampments, followed by remediation of each disastrous mess that is predictably left behind.
The province has opted to spend millions to acquire hotels for the homeless, then more to staff and to maintain them, but camping on city property just isn’t going away.
Why not buy or repurpose a large field, fence and equip it with toilet facilities and running water, and make that the permanent and only place where homeless camping is allowed?
The bigger question is, are we fooling ourselves into thinking that urban camping is a short-term issue, or do we want to accept it as a permanent lifestyle that should be freely supported by tax dollars forever?
Thoughtful planning and longer term solutions seem necessary.
Cheryl Conrad Victoria