Mayor Gregor Robertson will present a motion to Council Tuesday that calls for the City’s Homeless Action Plan to be revised with clear targets for ending street homelessness by 2015, as well as for a homeless count in Vancouver to take place in March 2010.
“If we want to achieve our goal of ending street homelessness in Vancouver by 2015, we need a clear plan that tracks our progress,” said Mayor Robertson. “We need a homeless count specific to Vancouver, an annual progress report on homelessness with clear metrics, and a long-term plan that reflects the current economic climate.”
Mayor Robertson’s motion, seconded by Councillor Kerry Jang, calls for city staff to revisit the Homeless Action Plan, which was approved in 2005, and return to Council by the end of April 2010 with a revised action plan, that:
• Presents up-to-date Vancouver-specific information on the number of street homeless individuals from a count to be completed in March 2010;
• Addresses the constraints of the changing economic climate;
• Outlines options for interim solutions for street homelessness;
• Provides options for optimizing City real estate and assets that can strategically leverage funding from other orders of government, private donors and investors for solutions for street homelessness;
• Creates a plan for an annual progress report card on the state of street homelessness to the public that includes results of an annual count and relevant metrics; and,
• Provides options for encouraging citizen engagement in supporting homeless individuals by expanding such initiatives as Homeless Action Week, Homeless Connect events and the Mayor’s Multi-Faith Advisory Group on Homelessness.
“There’s no bigger challenge we face in Vancouver than ending street homelessness,” said the Mayor. “We’ve got a long way to go, but by revising and refocusing the Homeless Action Plan, we can renew our efforts and put the City on a clear path to help people get off the street and into homes.”
Photo courtesy of Jay Black