by CBC News
Original Article: Click Here
Demonstrations were held across B.C. on Saturday to demand more affordable housing and better protection for renters as part of Homelessness Action Week.
In Vancouver, the day also marked the end of a five-day fast and vigil at Vancouver City Hall by church and social activists who said they are fed up with government inaction.
Church activist Dave Diewart said there were many who honked their horns to show support as they drove past the camp, but there were others who yelled, "Get a job."
The government didn't do much to provide housing while the economy was strong, Diewart said, and might now use the excuse of the economic downtown to do even less.
"It just doesn't seem like the urgency is there, despite the crisis across the country," he said.
Activist Carol Martin said that crisis is going to get deeper as jobs disappear during the looming recession.
"You are going to see an increase of homelessness or people at risk of being homeless. So, I suggest to people don't wait until it happens to you. You start doing something about it now to ensure your future, your kids' future," Martin said.
Roger Vaslot, a homeless man from Port Alberni, on Vancouver Island, said the worldwide economic turmoil shouldn't be used as an excuse to ignore the housing crisis.
"These cycles are not gonna change. They're not gonna make it any better or worse for the homeless. There's just gonna be more homeless on the street," Vaslot said. "I can't really think of any stronger words for the government other than, 'Please pay attention instead of waffling sideways.'"
One passerby, Aphrodite Harris, made her contribution to the cause with an offering of homemade bread.
"I brought some soda bread for the people who are representing those who are homeless," Harris said. "I'm upset that we have to do this and we're going to have to do it more because I think our new government doesn't care at all about ordinary people."
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