A plan that’s worked to control homelessness in an Alberta city may also work for Vernon.
That’s the suggestion of mayoralty candidate Erik Olesen who will hold a town hall this week focusing on that issue, in addition to addictions and housing.
Olsen says Medicine Hat has been homelessness-free for 3 years, and some of the ideas could help here.
“It’s not exactly their plan because every community is different, but you can develop plans and things that they’ve done well that maybe could be implemented in other cities across Canada to deal with such a large issue that happens everywhere. It’s just coming up with ways and being pro-active on how to deal with that,” Olesen tells Beach Radio News.
Medicine Hat has used a housing-first strategy to get its issues under control.
“They built a five year plan in 2010 on trying to end homelessness, and for the last three years, they are homelessness free, and they’re the only city in Canada that can say that.”
Olesen’s town hall at the Schubert Centre Wednesday from 7 to 9 pm.
He says the first 30 minutes will be about “getting to know the candidate.”
Olesen says he may hold another town hall later in the campaign focusing on other issues in the city.
Olesen — who operates two Mac’s convenience stores in the area — ran for the NDP in the 2017 BC election in the Kelowna-Lake Country riding, and was recently chosen as president of the North Okanagan Shuswap federal NDP Association.