Homeless numbers down in Alberni

There are fewer homeless people in the Alberni Valley than in 2007 but more resources are still needed to deal with the issue.

There are fewer homeless people in the Alberni Valley than in 2007 but more resources are still needed to deal with the issue, Alberni Valley Community Stakeholder Initiative to End Homlessness spokesperson Myron Jespersen said.

According to Jespersen, there are approximately two homeless people in the Valley today, which is down from 25 that were counted in 2007.

“Today we can identify them and work with them quickly,” Jespersen said.

Jespersen said that the homeless were counted by outreach workers and agencies, who had the best approximation of how many homeless there were.

“When we say homeless, we mean people who were outside sleeping rough,” Jespersen said.

When counts first started in 2007 homeless people were prevalent in doorways, parks and behind old buildings. “Now, we’re not seeing that,” Jespersen said.

Shelter was found for the homeless at the Port Alberni Shelter Society, Phoenix House, and other low barrier facilities.

While the homeless issue has been and continues to he addressed another set of circumstances could have an impact that AVCSI official Patty Edwards finds worrisome.

Low-cost rental housing units are becoming scarce as they are bought up and rents are subsequently raised.

The temporary closure of rooms at the Rusty Anchor Inn has also put the squeeze on the number of low-cost housing units available. “We’re losing affordable housing,” Edwards said.

Affordable housing was defined as housing in which tenants pay only one-third of the income for rent.

The group is working on several homeless initiatives.

One is with landlords to support them, and avoid and or resolve confrontations with tenants.

Another project involves lobbying the city and regional district to adopt bylaw changes that would allow secondary suites.

Housing for youth, families and seniors is still needed, Edwards said.

reporter@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

San Group announces plans to build new sawmill in Port Alberni

San Group has purchased 25 acres of Catalyst Paper land on Stamp Avenue for its expansion

Two Port Alberni cannabis dispensaries raided on legalization day

Leaf Compassion and Cannabis Club ticketed for “unlawful sale” of cannabis

ELECTION 2018: Homeless residents can vote too

Port Alberni Shelter Society offers use of address, more help for homeless to vote

Learn about ocean science aboard a Canadian Coast Guard ship

Ship will be docked in Port Alberni on Oct. 18 and 19

Alberni teen earns black belt in taekwondo

Lachlan Duncan of Port Alberni earned his black belt at Dragon Martial Arts

B.C. NDP retreats again on empty-home tax for urban areas

Rate reduced for all Canadians, dissident mayors to get annual meeting

Jets score 3 late goals to beat Canucks 4-1

Winnipeg ends three-game Vancouver win streak

Shots fired at Vancouver Island house during fight

Shots were fired at about 2:30 p.m. Thursday in 500 block of Kennedy Street, say Nanaimo RCMP

Two B.C. cannabis dispensaries raided on legalization day

Port Alberni dispensaries ticketed for “unlawful sale” of cannabis

Canada not sending anyone to Saudi business summit

Sources insist Ottawa never intended to dispatch a delegation this time around

Earthquake early-warning sensors installed off coast of B.C.

The first-of-its kind warning sensors are developed by Ocean Networks Canada

VPD ordered to co-operate with B.C. police watchdog probe

According to the IIO, a court is ordering Vancouver police to co-operate with an investigation into a fatal shooting

B.C. woman looks to reduce stigma surrounding weed-smoking moms

Shannon Chiarenza, a Vancouver mom of two, started weedmama.ca to act as a guide for newcomers to legal cannabis, specifically mothers

Nanaimo RCMP warn public after nine-year-old girl approached by motorist

Incident happened Wednesday morning near Park Avenue School

Most Read