Minister Rich Coleman on his plan to give new powers to police.

I am at this housing announcement yesterday where the Provincial and the Canadian Government are spending $177 million on renovating social housing. Not bad for Vancouver where 20 SRO have been allocated $13 million in addition to other social housing projects. There is no money for any new social housing.

Why I was invited is a mystery to me, who knows just being a little pond in the bigger game? I was a little shaky in the thin air of the upper stratosphere of these decision makers just being a community organizer. The Hon. Sockwell Day was there, the Premier of BC and the Minister of Housing and Social Development. Pretty big players in national and provincial politics.

It was interesting to see the interpersonal dynamics of this event. All these guys are pretty much alpha males in their own right. The Premier, say what you will about the polices of his government, he is very comfortable in his own skin. He is a great communicator. Not just to the media, but to the room. He makes really solid eye contact with everyone in the room. There is no chinks in this guys armour. He stands and delivers.

The Hon. Rich Coleman was the MC for this media event. This guy is big. Not just in girth, but in height as well. He has to be 6’ 5”. At this event it was definitely the Premiers gig and Coleman is just there to make his boss look good. He is not even mention on the media release. If you see this guy in the legislature there is a lot of bluster to his answers in question period. When you see him up close though you can see that he is not quite as comfortable in his skin as Campbell. He has all these little ticks.

Stockwell Day, was confident and he spoke well, even if the Premier took most of his speaking points. He was friendly and worked the room and spoke with some of the construction workers in the room. He has the stature of a runner.

The big presentation was over and Day and Campbell took questions from the media and Coleman just slides off to one side. He knows that the boss is going to take all the media, best just get out of the way. I saw my moment and introduce myself. With the Renters at Risk Campaign we had been slagging this guy off pretty bad for about three years so I thought I just come over and say “hey”. Anyways he was polite, but had the attitude of “what ever” and I did not really know what next to say to him and then Mike Howell from the Courier saved me and cut in and started an interview with Coleman.

Mike was asking the Minister about his initiative to introduce legislation to give tools to VPD to force homeless people into shelters against their will. I am standing there and it hits me that I should pop the camera on video and get this interview instead of just standing there.

Mike started the interview of with the question” “The last time we spoke, you
mentioned you were looking at introducing legislation in the fall. What’s
the latest?” The clip below is his response. Apparently if folks living on the street don’t want to go to a shelter than they are mentally ill. But what the next steps to me would be un clear.

2 Responses to “Minister Rich Coleman on his plan to give new powers to police.”

  1. Michael Phillips says:

    Amazing, so if a person wants to sleep where they are and resists being forcibly taken away by police, their civil rights are simply suspended on the spot by a police officer. Wow.

    Force under the Mental Health Act is a necessary nuclear option when someone is mentally ill and not capable of rational thought, it’s not just a clever way to get people to go where you tell them. It’s absolutely frightening that the precedent may be set for the government to strip a person of their right to physical liberty because it disagrees with the sensibleness of a person’s private and legal behaviour. Zero understanding of our Constitution.

  2. Michael Phillips says:

    Thanks for the clip.

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