Hope in the shadows opening

Hendrik Beune, Hope in the Shadow calendar vendor

Hendrik Beune, Hope in the Shadow calendar vendor

more images of the event

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

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

File this one under weird

Okay so I got an invite from the Premier’s Office to attend an announcement on new spending on housing by the Province of BC and the Canadian Government. Why I would be invited seems a bit odd. Anyways, here is the invite below. Here is the link to the photos from this morning. I got photos of the Hon. Stockwell Day, the Premier, and the Hon. Rich Coleman.

I am going to scan the media release that was handed out with the details of all the spending. I will post this as well.

I introduce myself to Minister Coleman and then Mike Howell from the Courier cut in and did an interview with him on his initiative to give powers to police to pick homeless people off the street against their well. I got video of this and will post it to UTUBE and then post it here.

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housing announcement images Continue reading File this one under weird →

A bridge to a cool planet

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A Bride to a Cool Planet

Global Warming can seem pretty overwhelming when we’re alone, but toghther we can make a difference

This December, world leaders are meeting in Copenhage to agree on a treaty to stop global warming.

The Canadian Government must be a strong leader in these talks. Here’s an easy way to tell them that you want action: Come to the bridge on October 24. Send a powerful message to Ottawa. Talk to each other about world we want.

Images from St. Paul Hospital renewal forum

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more images of the forum

Forum on renewal of St. Paul’s Hospital tonight

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Google street view

Check it out, my image was captured in Google’s street view. Don’t tell anyone at the City, but I was out postering in the West End for a West End Residents Association event by stapling posters to Hydro poles. You can see my red staple gun. Good thing Google did not actually catch me in the act.

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1brent in street view

Anton’s motion on Park Board dies on Docket

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The independence of the Vancouver Park Board

At the September 22 Council meeting Councillor Suzanne Anton submitted a motion on notice about the independence of the Vancouver Park Board. Originally Councilor Anton had intended to move the motion at the September 22 meeting, but for some reason she with drew the motion and put it on notice. In preparation for the motion the City Manager, Dr. Penny Ballem, asked the City legal department to produce a legal opinion on what the jurisdiction of the City Manager was in regard to hiring of the General Manager of the Park Board.

Councillor Anton’s motion was motivated by the sudden letter of retirement by Susan Mundick, the General Manager of Vancouver Park Board and the surrounding gab in the blogosphere by the leaked email from the City Manager to the Susan Mundick regarding her plan to pick her own replacement. The City Manager considered the plan of the General Manager to choose her replacement as “inappropriate”.

The legal opinion that the City Manager asked to be prepared for the motion originally was not officially given to the public, but was leaked to a member of the media.
state of VancouverI guess that would put it in the public domain now.

Now on October 6 Councillor Anton’s Motion is on the city Council agenda. The motion was motivated by a leaked email and much of speculation around the motion was based on a leaked document.
CoV Council Agenda with motions

The question going into today’s Council meeting was will any of the other Councilors second the motion given that the question that the motion seeks to clarify have been answered by the legal opinion?

As it turn out the there was no Councillor to seconded the motion and as the Mayor stated: “ that motion is behind us” and it died on the docket.

Olympic Observers

During the 2010 Winter games Pivot Legal and the British Columbia Civil Liberties Association (BCCLA) is planning on having trained “Observers” to monitor and document and infringements of civil liberties of citizen by the the 2010 Vancouver Integrated Security Unit (V2010 ISU).

BCCLA states:

“Legal Observer teams will be observing major protests and other potential conflict hot spots like Olympic venues and the Downtown Eastside. They’ll report observations back to the BCCLA’s team of volunteer lawyers who are prepared to go to court to protect people’s rights where complaints can’t be resolved informally. Our Observers’ first-hand evidence will form a solid foundation for those legal actions. Observers are the watchful eyes that will be focused on police, military and private security conduct to ensure accountability. Are you ready to join us on the front lines preserving rights and freedoms during the 2010 Olympics?”

BCCLA website

One year latter and still not fixed: Harm Reduction Victoria

On October the 1st 2009 Harm Reduction Victoria (HRV) hosted a forum entitled: “Needle exchanges and supervised consumption services can contribute to safer neighbourhoods”. The forum was a panel discussion comprised of injection drug users, needle exchange activist, the Executive Director of the Dr. Peter Centre (DPC) and myself as a rep from the West End to speak to how the DPC functions in a densely populated residential neighbourhood. HRV is advocating for a “fixed” needle exchange facility to replace the one that was closed in May 2008 and to replace the mobile needle exchanges that are currently deployed.

A little background

In May of 2008, the Vancouver Island Health Authority (VIHA) closed a fixed needle exchange facility on Cormorant Street caving to the demands of business in the area claiming excessive street disorder.2008 CBC report
HRV stated that it was obvious that the decision to close the fixed needle exchange rather than develop a plan to mitigate the negative impact to the surrounding area would cost lives.HRV

In the week leading up to HRV forum one of the panelist died. Randy Beddow, a member and a Director of the Board of Society of Living
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Intravenous Drug Users (SOLID) died of unknown causes. At the beginning of the forum his friends paid tribute to him. It was a poignant moment that made the importance of the evening all the more apparent. Injection drug users lives are high risk. As my partner who is general internist at St. Paul Hospital and has many injection drug users as patients says: “There is nothing glamorous about drug users, it’s a hard life”.
news story about Randy Continue reading One year latter and still not fixed: Harm Reduction Victoria →