Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden, left, met with provincial ministers on Feb. 25. (Contributed)

Mayor asks province for $60M to pay for housing, costs for B.C. tent city

Mike Morden met with a number of provincial ministers on Feb. 25

Maple Ridge Mayor Mike Morden has asked the provincial government to invest $60 million for social housing and to assist with the costs associated with Anita Place Tent City.

Morden met with a number of provincial ministers on Feb. 25 to discuss the impacts of housing affordability, the increasing frequency of ‘renovictions’ and the availability of affordable housing for seniors and those dealing with poverty. He also discussed operational models, accountability of operators and the community impacts for facilities that are addressing the housing needs of those with addictions and mental health challenges in the community.

“While this is a large list of topics, they are interconnected. I got the sense that there is a broad understanding that we all need to work across jurisdictions to identify the problems, assess and enact solutions and ensure that we all understand our roles and responsibilities,” said Mayor Morden who also thanked local MLAs, Minister Lisa Beare and Bob D’Eith.

Residents of Anita Place were moved out of the camp on March 1 after an evacuation order was issued by the Provincial Fire Commissioner following an application by Maple Ridge fire chief Howard Exner.

The site is currently closed, with security personnel stationed at the site 24 hours a day supported by the Ridge Meadows RCMP.

READ MORE: Anita Place camp resident barricades himself in shelter as more inspections take place

READ MORE: Evacuation order granted for Maple Ridge tent city

Accommodations and meals for evacuees from the camp were provided by the City of Maple Ridge’s Emergency Support Services team that opened a reception centre on Lougheed Highway east of 222 Avenue, at noon on Saturday.

Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing, said the province wants to make sure that everyone who has been evacuated can access shelter, food and health and social services.

“In the longer term, this reinforces the need to act quickly and build more supportive housing in Maple Ridge,” she said noting that dozens of former Anita Place campers have homes and can access support services in modular housing opened several months ago.

Morden asked the province to look into the difficulty that local governments have in getting accurate information on people who are receiving services in the community and what the outcomes are as they move through the network of services and front line organizations. His hope is that by addressing reporting and data collection gaps across ministerial portfolios there can be better coordination and improvement in outcomes for those who are dealing with multiple health issues and housing challenges.

Those who attended the meeting included:

· Honourable Judy Darcy, Minister of Mental Health & Addictions

· Honourable Adrian Dix, Minister of Health

· Honourable Selina Robinson, Minister of Municipal Affairs & Housing

· Honourable Shane Simpson, Minister of Social Development & Poverty Reduction

· Honorable Lisa Beare, Minister of Tourism MLA Maple Ridge – Pitt Meadows

· Mr. Bob D’Eith MLA Maple Ridge – Mission

· Mr. Shane Ramsay, CEO of BC Housing

· Michael Morden, Mayor City of Maple Ridge

· Kelly Swift, Acting CAO City of Maple Ridge

Just Posted

Tears and laughter celebrate Bruce Johnson’s Life

Over 1,000 people packed the conference hall of the Lakeside to celebrate the life of Bruce Johnson

Destructive blaze in West Kelowna fatal for cat

The fire at a West Kelowna condo claimed the life of one tenant’s cat

For New York artist from the darkness comes light

Light has a spiritual life of its own for New York artist who opens his show March 30 in Penticton

Penticton SAR team helicopters injured climber to safety

A 30-year-old woman suffered a suspected lower-limb fracture in Skaha Bluffs Provincial Park

‘Hauntingly gritty’ duo coming to iconic Okanagan music venue

The LYNNeS multi-award-winning Canadian folk artists are going to be in Penticton March 27

Okanagan experts share bike security tips

Geoff Prowse from the Bike Barn and Josh Shulman from Freedom the Bike Shop share their tips.

Bobrovsky perfect as Blue Jackets blank Canucks 5-0

Vancouver shut out for 10th time this season

Kelowna artist featured on furniture

Shandra Smith’s work is now available on credenzas

Destructive blaze in West Kelowna fatal for cat

The fire at a West Kelowna condo claimed the life of one tenant’s cat

Sock Hop aims to send dancers back to another time

Writers’ Festival fundraiser in Salmon Arm springs into step for another year

Man pinned under metal tank in West Kelowna

Emergency personnel are on the scene

Fundraising campaign launched for man caught in SilverStar avalanche

In only two days, the GoFundMe surpassed its $15,000 goal

Terror at sea: Helicopter rescues frightened cruise passengers in Norway

The Viking Sky cruise ship was carrying 1,300 passengers and crew when it experienced engine trouble

DOJ: Trump campaign did not co-ordinate with Russia in 2016

Attorney General William Barr said special counsel “does not exonerate” Trump of obstructing justice

Most Read