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Vancouver asks B.C. for $3.8 million to improve washroom access for homeless people

Town says the Downtown Eastside has ‘persistent homelessness and a scarcity of obtainable amenities.’

Vancouver will vote subsequent week on whether or not to ask the province for $3.8 million to take care of and enhance washroom entry for homeless individuals town’s Downtown Eastside.

In 2020, town prolonged hours in present washrooms, and added attendants to enhance security. However with out extra funding, workers say town might want to finish these operations early subsequent yr.

“These washrooms and associated packages are essential to particular person and group well being and security, and reply to the continued impacts of homelessness, psychological well being and substance use (drug overdoses,) the report says.

Workers say public bathrooms are important infrastructure that present primary sanitation companies, and that there are lots of boundaries that have an effect on entry for all individuals.

These boundaries embody working hours, cleanliness, availability, restrictions for paying clients, a way of belonging or welcome, and actual and/or perceived dangers to security, in line with the report.

If the province agrees to the funding, $1.55 million would go towards working the moveable washroom trailer on the Astoria Lodge, which the report says had about 4,000 customers in June, or 150 to 200 individuals a day.

About $400,000 can be allotted for enhancements to washrooms at Most important and Hastings road, and one other $400,000 at Victory Sq.. The identical quantity of funding would go to the attended washroom at 144 East Hastings St.

The remainder of the funding would go to sustaining the automated public bathroom at Pigeon Park and doubtlessly attendants for 2 extra washrooms, at Most important Road and Terminal Avenue, and Most important Road and Powell Road.

The current Metro Vancouver homeless rely, which is performed each three years, recognized 4,821 individuals throughout the area experiencing homelessness, a 32 per cent enhance since 2020.

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