Confab to battle poverty

The number of homeless people on the North Island has been increasing rapidly and a meeting is being ... to find out why

The number of homeless people on the North Island has been increasing rapidly and a meeting is being held Dec. 1 at Seven Hills Golf Course to find out why. The meeting is being organized by Shane Thomas of the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) who invites all concerned citizens to attend.

Thomas encourages a variety of people in the community to make their insights heard, including First Nations, property managers and owners, housing advocates, and regional government officials.

There is little information regarding the homeless crisis, but a wide variety of people of all ages are considered at risk of homelessness.

Compounding the problem is the deterioration of housing currently available, and lack of access for the physically disabled.

“We want people to stay here or come here, to do that we need suitable accommodation,” said Nikki Shaw, Port Hardy councillor and chair of the homelessness and housing committee. The meeting is to be the next step in finding out the nature and extent of the problem and addressing it.

The meeting will be held Dec. 1 at Seven Hills Golf Course 3:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Dinner will be provided.