Call-out for the Olympic Tent Village!
Alongside the Rally for Homes, where our demand of 'No More Empty Talk, No More Empty Lots' will be heard clearly amidst the Olympic chaos, there is another action planned to further underscore our demand for housing on the DTES.
Read ahead for all the info and inspiration you can gain from the "Olympic Tent Village," to be launched on FEB. 15th.
*** The Olympic Tent Village needs your support ***
The upcoming 2010 Winter Olympics has escalated the homelessness crisis in Vancouver's Downtown Eastside and the Greater Vancouver area. Since the Olympic bid, homelessness has nearly tripled in the GVRD, while real estate and condominium development in the Downtown Eastside is outpacing social housing by a rate of 3:1. Meanwhile, a heightened police presence has further criminalized those living in extreme material poverty in the poorest postal code in Canada.
With the eyes of the world on Vancouver, residents of the Downtown Eastside and supporters will be setting up an Olympic Tent Village (ie. Tent City) to raise our demands and voices for:
1. Real action to end homelessness now. No more empty talk and no more empty lots.
2. End condo development and displacement in the Downtown Eastside
3. End discriminatory ticketing, police harassment, and all forms of criminalization of poverty.
The Olympic Tent Village, a grassroots community effort, will need YOUR support and solidarity to keep going! We are relying on the determination of the DTES community and the strength of our supporters during the Olympic period.
*** We need: ***
- Blankets, foams, and sleeping bags (for DTES and/or homeless residents)
- Non-perishable food items (granola bars, trail mixes, peanut butter etc)
- Books, magazines
- Bus tickets
- Cigarettes, rolling paper
- If your organization, group of friends, or community network can commit to a six hour supporter shift (6 am to noon, noon to 6 pm, 6 pm to midnight, midnight to 6 am) with a presence of 8 people, please let us know. We definitely need to ensure a high presence during night times when we are most vulnerable to law enforcement activity.
- Host an art workshop, performances, storytelling or poetry evening to facilitate the building of connection and community.
This is a critical time to take concrete action about the ongoing poverty, homelessness, and criminalization in the DTES, which cannot be sanitized or hidden for the Olympics. Once the Tent Village is up (and public), FEB. 15th, we encourage you to please stop by – whether for 5 minutes or 5 days.
Thank you for your support. Please respond to us at the contacts below if you are able to donate any of the above items and would like to arrange pick up/drop off, or to coordinate supporter shifts or support programming at the Olympic Tent Village.
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Censored News is published by censored journalist Brenda Norrell. A journalist for 27 years, Brenda lived on the Navajo Nation for 18 years, writing for Navajo Times, AP, USA Today, Lakota Times and other American Indian publications. After being censored and then terminated by Indian Country Today in 2006, she began the Censored Blog to document the most censored issues. She currently serves as human rights editor for the U.N. OBSERVER & International Report at the Hague and contributor to Sri Lanka Guardian, Narco News and CounterPunch. She was cohost of the 5-month Longest Walk Talk Radio across America, with Earthcycles Producer Govinda Dalton in 2008: www.earthcycles.net/
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