Amalgamation

Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps says she has called for a special closed council meeting to discuss the fate of homeless encampments in the city.

The meeting will convene on Thursday, August 27 when Mayor and councillors will seek legal advice on how to better manage the encampment situation.

“The current situation is not working for anyone,” Helps said in a message to Victoria Buzz.

“Unfortunately it’s not as easy as simply enforcing the 7-7 camping bylaw without a better plan in place.”

During the pandemic, homeless people have been allowed to camp in certain parks, like Beacon Hill Park, 24/7 rather than just overnight.

Several councillors have voiced concerns about the need to end round the clock encampments at parks.

Last month, the B.C. Supreme Court approved an injunction order that required homeless people camping at Beacon Hill Park to move to less ecologically vulnerable parts of the park.

Mayor Helps says any decisions about bylaws made at the closed council meeting will be made public at the regular Committee of the Whole meeting on September 3.

More to come.

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