A City In BC That Was Accused Of 'Inflicting Serious Harm On Vulnerable People' Apologized
A city in B.C. was found to have "inflicted serious harm on vulnerable people," after removing shelter structures from a homeless camp, according to a recent Supreme Court ruling.
The City of Prince George has since apologized and said that they are now re-evaluating how they deal with homelessness in the area.
It has also withdrawn an appeal that they made after the court refused to allow them to issue injunctions against homeless encampments.
In a statement issued on Thursday, city officials said that they apologize to anyone who "experienced trauma" when they "dismantled a portion of the Lower Patricia encampment."
They added that when they removed the structures from the encampment, they believed that they were abandoned.
The City said that they now understand "what additional steps could have been taken to ensure those shelters had been permanently abandoned."
In a separate statement released on the same day, the City said they withdrew their appeal, which sought to close the Lower Patricia encampment.
The statement said that the city is now "reevaluating its approach and response to homelessness and homeless encampments."
They also concluded that the appeal was "unlikely to achieve either the immediate result of closing the Lower Patricia encampment or otherwise addressing the city’s concerns relating to homelessness or encampments in the city."
When the court heard the case, it ruled that there is not enough shelter space or housing in Prince George for the people in the Lower Patricia encampment to move into.
Now, city officials are working with the province and B.C. Housing on short-term and long-term solutions to address the encampments in the city.