Premier acknowledges homeless issue ‘a serious challenge’

“There are camps and communities like Maple Ridge, Nanaimo, Vancouver, are more recently Langford”

  • Oct. 5, 2018 8:30 a.m.

Paul Bucci/Black Press

Premier John Horgan acknowledged on Thursday that some members of a roving group of homeless campers in Greater Victoria may be activists, but said that he would respect their right to free speech.

“I won’t deny that there are those that may well be more interested in exercising their constitutional rights to speak freely about issues that they care about,” Horgan said at a media availability, “then I’ll respect that as well.”

RELATED: Saanich municipality and police investigate options to disband homeless camp

RELATED: Mayor says Nanaimo has land suitable for ‘rapid response’ to homelessness

RELATED: ‘They had nowhere else to go,’ mayoral candidate hosting tent city campers

Horgan said British Columbia’s homeless issue is a serious challenge.

“Certainly we’re doing our level best to make sure that our housing plan is there for the hard to house and there are many, many in British Columbia,” Horgan said.

“There are camps and communities like Maple Ridge, Nanaimo, Vancouver, are more recently Langford.

“So this is a challenge and a serious one.”

After a two-week stay at the campground of Goldstream Provincial Park, the tent city campers moved into the backyard of a Saanich mayoral candidate.

“This is the last resort, they had nowhere to go so I decided that this was it,” David Shebib said recently, who is once again running for Saanich mayor. “I don’t see politicians coming up with any answers.”

Chrissy Brett, the leader of the homeless camp known as Camp Namegans, said there are about 20 to 25 campers in the space where Shebib resides in Saanich.



c.vanreeuwyk@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Vernon Vipers’ Trey Taylor wins with Team West at CJHL Top Prospects game

17-year-old defenseman also makes NHL Central Scouting list of top prospects

Vernon watercolour artist returning to spotlight

Patricia Neil Lawton is holding her first art show in 5 years at Nadine’s Fine Art and Frames, Feb. 8

Cows, cars and more: Coldstream secondary students show off capstone projects

Kalamalka Secondary seniors displayed Career Life Connections capstone projects Jan. 15

Low-level meth dealer gets 6 months jail time in Vernon

BC Supreme Court Justice’s sentence concludes case related to June 2017 offence

Vernon perfect getaway for Prince Harry and Meghan Markle, mayor says

Family-oriented community also home to Royal interests; film and helicopter industries

‘Like an ATM’: World’s first biometric opioid-dispensing machine launches in B.C.

First-of-its-kind dispensing machine unveiled in the Downtown Eastside with hopes of curbing overdose deaths

BC Green Party leader visits northern B.C. pipeline protest site

Adam Olsen calls for better relationship between Canada, British Columbia and First Nations

B.C. society calls out conservation officer after dropping off bear cub covered in ice

Ice can be seen in video matted into emaciated bear cub’s fur

Horgan cancels event in northern B.C. due to security concerns, says Fraser Lake mayor

The premier will still be visiting the city, but the location and day will not be made public

B.C. landlord sentenced to two years in jail for torching his own rental property

Wei Li was convicted of intentionally lighting his rental property on fire in October 2017

B.C. town spends $14.14 per resident for snow removal in one month

Costs of snow removal to the Town of Princeton skyrocketed in December.… Continue reading

PHOTOS: Eastern Newfoundland reeling, search underway for missing man after blizzard

More than 70 centimetres of new snow fell overnight, creating whiteout conditions

Prince Harry, Meghan to give up ‘royal highness’ titles

‘Harry, Meghan and Archie will always be much loved members of my family,’ says Queen Elizabeth II

Photo reminds Salmon Arm resident of connection to former drama teacher Justin Trudeau

Prime minister remembered as being as a funny, larger-than-life person

Most Read