Homeless campers at Victoria courthouse reject offer of temporary shelter

Dozens of homeless people camping at Victoria's Law Courts are vowing to stay despite the B.C. government's offer of alternate shelter.

VICTORIA — Dozens of homeless people camping at Victoria’s Law Courts are vowing to stay despite the B.C. government’s offer of alternate shelter.

More than 80 people sleeping in what they’re calling Super InTent City say they will reject plans to break up a self-sustainable community and that a lack of affordable housing is a big issue.

The B.C. government owns the courthouse land, and the province has sent campers a letter saying the growing number of people at the site has created health and safety concerns.

Camp supporter Ashley Mollison says the government is attempting to impose a one-size-fits-all solution on the homeless without addressing the diverse needs at the camp.

Last week, the province and the City of Victoria opened a shelter for 40 of the campers that included indoor tents, meals and supports.

Victoria has been wresting with the homeless issue since a 2008 court ruling allowed people to pitch their tents in city parks when shelters are full.

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