WATCH: Both residents and neighbours of the Johnson Street care home facility say supports and programs aren’t being delivered. April Lawrence reports.
There has been heightened security around the Victoria Conservatory of Music since a 147-unit supportive housing facility opened up down the street.
“The residents don’t have anything to do so they are out on the street and there’s loitering and obviously some challenging behaviours as a result of addiction issues,” said Jane Butler McGregor, CEO of the Victoria Conservatory of Music.
Residents in the condominium building next door say the last month has been tough.
“People screaming, people doing drugs, broken windows, people throwing things from the windows,” said Oscar Mogollon.
Former tent city resident Bert Woldring, who now lives in the building, says none of the programs and activities they were promised are happening, and people are bored.
“I’m not the only one suffering from boredom, and it manifests itself as in a certain level of discontentment they take out on the premises around them,” said Woldring.
Butler McGregor says when the province sold the neighbourhood on the place, it promised the residents would have supports like counselling and addiction services on site.
“And then to not deliver them is something I cannot accept and will not tolerate,” she said.
B.C. Housing insists there are supports in place at the facility such as life skills training and social and recreational programs and that there’s a nurse on site during the weekdays.
They also say there will be upgrades done to the exterior of the building that should improve things for the neighbourhood.
But the people who actually live there tell a different story.
“There’s no programs, there’s nothing like that going on yet,” said Jessee Ludtke, “there’s community rooms on each floor that aren’t as of yet unlocked yet.”
“They don’t have community rooms, they don’t have T.V.’s, they don’t have internet so I don’t even necessarily blame the clients there, it’s probably the government that needs to put more money, more staff and more security,” said Mogollon.
And to make matters worse, neighbours have been told the lone security guard is only funded until the end of the month.
BC Housing says it’s reviewing the need for having security outside the building long-term.