While a deadline is in place to have Tent City cleared tomorrow at the Victoria Courthouse, it seems more time may be needed.
Clean up continues at Tent City, as more space continues to open on Victoria’s Courthouse lawn with occupants moving to the former Johnson Street Care home.
“Just under half of tent city is moved into the Johnson Street building,” says Tent City supporter Christine Brett.
“I think that there’s a few hiccups.”
Brett adds, “There’s original people that have been here from the beginning that aren’t on the primary list and there are people that are on the primary list that were never really part of tent city.”
The target of moving 8 to 12 people a day to Johnson Street has been slowed down since work to get rooms ready on the second and third floors is still not complete.
“I think we had 5 maybe 7 moved in yesterday and so far we’re just waiting for them to process the last of people’s things,” says Brett
Looming is Monday’s deadline set by a BC Supreme Court judge to have all of the campers cleared from the courthouse property.
So far, the number is up to 64 who have moved to the former Central Care home this week.
The Housing Ministry today said “as we are working with a vulnerable population, we want to make sure the move is a success.”
Adding, “all those at the site who are in need of housing and who have registered will be offered housing options.”
“We are getting strong cooperation from people at the site.”
Brett says making tomorrow’s deadline, however, is an unrealistic goal, with two aboriginal youth unable to move until Wednesday.
“It’s taken months for them to be able to get empty rooms situated so that people could move in, but yet they’re only giving people a week to actually pack up an entire camp and people’s lives and homes for the past 8 months.”
Brett adds moving campers to shelters does not resolve the bigger homeless picture in Victoria.