Toronto’s Plan to Push Out the Homeless

Published on The Bullet, Socialist Project’s E-Bulletin No. 1094, by John Clarke, March 24, 2015.

The Mayor’s Office in Toronto is today occupied by a much slicker operation than it was during the years of dysfunctional, bigoted buffoonery that unfolded under Rob Ford. Mayor John Tory has resumed the drive toward a fully fledged neoliberal city but has the basic political skills to frame his twin agendas of austerity and upscale redevelopment in the language of inclusiveness. He has been sufficiently proficient at this to rapidly create what Michael Laxer has termed an austerity consensus supported by the overwhelming majority of the Council, including its left wing … //

… Tragic Deaths Force the City to Act: … //

… Massive Relocation:

The huge change in the situation that we must now deal with, however, is that all efforts to address the condition of the shelters and their appalling levels of overcrowding will now take place in the context of a drive to relocate them on a massive scale. At the heart of this, will be the infamous “George Street Redevelopment” project. Driven by encroaching gentrification, including and particularly the nearby 46 storey Pace Condo Tower that we have previously targeted and mobilized against, plans have been formulated to permanently remove all but 100 of the 334 emergency men’s shelter beds that are presently provided at Seaton House and the Schoolhouse shelter, which is located next door to it. 170 transitional beds would also be lost. Demolition will begin in 2017 if the plan is implemented (page 17) and, for a three year period, the entire homeless population on the street, all 674 of them, would be relocated.

As serious as this all is, it’s clear that the process of displacement is by no means limited to George Street. On page 17, we are told that “pressure created by a rising real estate market and the need to upgrade existing shelter facilities to better meet clients needs will result in several changes in the shelter system over the next five years.” I’d not be quite as ready as the SSHA bureaucracy to accept that the appetites of the real estate market can be reconciled with ‘clients needs’. What’s clear, though, is that the developer’s wishes are law as far as the City is concerned and, if condos or commercial projects need to be built where homeless people take shelter, the homeless will just have to move on.

The removal process is already upon us. The 124 bed Hope Shelter at McCaul and College Streets is set to close on April 14 and the report confirms that “At least one other shelter will need relocation this year as a result of their leased property being sold. Two other shelters may require relocation due to unsuitable conditions and poor state of repair of facilities” (page 17). Beyond even this, “…over the next few years, a total of six shelters will have to relocate” (not counting the impact of the removals on George Street) (page 17) and it’s clear that any additional space that is opened to meet the need to reduce occupancy levels will not be located in the central area if the developers and the City are able to determine the outcome.

The plan being advanced by SSHA is a total disaster for homeless people in Toronto. It is a reckless adaption to the needs of property owners and developers that simply cannot be allowed to proceed. On page 18, the report seems concerned that “..fifty three per cent of all shelter beds are concentrated in three downtown wards” while twenty one wards have none at all. So, “underserved locations outside of the downtown core should be prioritized for new shelters.” Of course, the outlying portions of the city are also ‘underserved’ when it comes to banking towers and corporate headquarters. There’s a reason why Bay Street isn’t located in Rexdale or that Toronto City Hall isn’t perched on the edge of the Rouge Valley. Equally obviously, people who face destitution tend to congregate in core urban areas to try and survive. Scan this report as thoroughly as you will but you will not see any proposals for how you can possibly meet the survival needs of people you dump outside the city core. Where will you locate drop-ins and support agencies? How will you overcome the fact that people will be left to fend for themselves in parts of the city where distances between service providing facilities are measured in miles instead of blocks?

Social Cleansing: … //

(full text).

(John Clarke is an organizer with the Ontario Coalition Against Poverty OCAP).

Related Links:

Other Links:

False flags & cyber wars:,New Snowden leaks reveal Canada spy agency’s ‘deception toolbox’, on Russia Today RT, March 24, 2015;

US House urges Obama to send arms to Ukraine, on Russia Today RT, March 24, 2015;

Tsipras und Merkel, Streitet Euch endlich, im Spiegel online/Wirtschaft, von David Böcking, 24.März 2015: Die deutsch-griechischen Beziehungen sind mies, das weiß jeder. Doch beim Antrittsbesuch von Premier Tsipras vermeidet Angela Merkel eine echte Diskussion. Dabei muss der Streit endlich offen ausgetragen werden – nur so kann er beigelegt werden.
Eines konnte man Alexis Tsipras beim ersten gemeinsamen Auftritt mit Angela Merkel nicht vorwerfen: Dass er zu wenig Gesprächsstoff mitgebracht hätte. Der griechische Premier erklärte noch einmal, dass die Sparprogramme für sein Land kein Erfolg gewesen seien, er sprach die Siemens-Affäre an und den NS-Zwangskredit. Genügend Themen, zu denen man auch die Meinung der Gastgeberin hören wollte …;

Dank Zinstief – Der Immobilienmarkt boomt und boomt, im Spiegel online/Wirtschaft, 24.März 2015;

Western ISIS adventurism, Israel behind Hamas – new Assange revelations, on Russia Today RT, March 24, 2015;

The Fourth Reich – What Some Europeans See When They Look at Germany, on Spiegel Online International, by Nikolaus Blome, Sven Böll, Katrin Kuntz, Dirk Kurbjuweit, Walter Mayr, Mathieu von Rohr, Christoph Scheuermann, Christoph Schult, March 23, 2015 (Photo Gallery): Following World War II, a German return to dominance in Europe seemed an impossibility. But the euro crisis has transformed the country into a reluctant hegemon and comparisons with the Nazis have become rampant. Are they fair?

Ukraine-Konflikt: Poroschenko warnt vor Privatarmeen von Oligarchen, im Spiegel online/Wirtschaft, 23.März 2015: im Osten der Ukraine kämpfen viele Freiwilligenverbände, die von reichen Geschäftsleuten finanziert werden. Nach der Besetzung eines staatlichen Unternehmens in Kiew will Präsident Poroschenko durchgreifen;

Police in the US Kill Citizens at Over 70 Times the Rate of Other First-World Nations, on Global (first on The Free Thought Project), by Matt Aqorist, March 23, 2015;

Smog-beater: first hydrogen powered tram developed in China, on Russia Today RT, March 23, 2015;

Clinton Foundation’s Deep Financial Ties to Ukrainian Oligarch, Victory in Law Suit Against BBC’s 9/11 Cover-Up, on Global, by Global Research News, March 23, 2015: Selected articles;

Interview: Neil Jacobstein Discusses Future of Jobs, Universal Basic Income and the Ethical Dangers of AI, on Singularity HUB, by Tim Borny, March 23, 2015;

From Basic Income To Social Dividends – Sharing The Value Of Common Resources, on, by Rajesh Makwana, March 22, 2015;

Deutschland muss endlich aufwachen – Gregor Gysi, 40.06 min, von WORLD-CHANNEL am 26. Feb 2015 hochgeladen;

… and this:

  • The Sacred Geometry of The Universe, 106.46 min, uploaded by What They Don’t Want You To Know, Feb 1, 2015: According to Stephen Skinner, the study of sacred geometry has its roots in the study of nature, and the mathematical principles at work therein. Many forms observed in nature can be related to geometry, for example, the chambered nautilus grows at a constant rate and so its shell forms a logarithmic spiral to accommodate that growth without changing shape. Also, honeybees construct hexagonal cells to hold their honey. These and other correspondences are sometimes interpreted in terms of sacred geometry and considered to be further proof of the natural significance of geometric forms;
  • Pythagoras, Sacred Geometry & the Holographic Universe, 59.00 min, uploaded by LAIGlobal, May 10, 2014;

… und noch dies:

  • Wege aus der Euro-Krise – Prof. Dr. H. Flassbeck, 73.54 min, von Demo Kratie am 10. April 2013 hochgeladen: Vortrag von Professor Dr. Heiner Flassbeck, Direktor der Abteilung für Globalisierung und Entwicklungsstrategien, UNCTAD, vom 7. März 2012 in Düsseldorf … und weitere Vidos in autoplay (z.B. Machtkampf um Ressourcen etc …).
    (Mein Kommentar: es gibt zwei Möglichkeiten, dieses Ungleichgewicht in der realen Oekonomie, der Finanz- und Schuld-Problematik, zwischen den Ländern und Machtblöcken zu lösen:
    - innerhalb des bestehenden Systems, beispielsweise Prof. H. Flassbeck’s obige Lösung als kontrollierte Veränderung über Jahre;
    - oder total ausserhalb dieses Systems: wir machen einen kontrollierten Umbau zu etwas ganz Neuem, beispielsweise der Plan B der Wissensmanufaktur – oder Prof. Franz Hörmanns selbstorganisierte, ressourcenbasierte Wirtschaft als mögliche Vorschläge.
    Sie brauchen nicht zu raten, dasss diese in sich tief gespaltene Menschheit – zusammen mit ihrer korrupten Elite – nichts entscheiden wird. Diese gehirngewaschene und auf Gruppen-Gehorsam programmierte Spezies, der man während der Kind- und Schulzeit unwiderruflich beibrachte, wie andere Ihr Leben bestimmen, wird somit nicht selbstbestimmt gemeinsam entscheiden und handeln können.
    Fazit: sind wir unfähig uns zu einigen, und verläuft diese zwangsläufig kommende Veränderung unkontrolliert, gilt die Macht des Stärkeren. Wer sein Leben nicht selbst bestimmt, der WIRD bestimmt.
    Und noch etwas zum Grübeln: Protokoll zur Programmierung des neuen Welt-Computers vom 24. Dez 2010
    – Heidi).

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