15,000-name petition against Kelowna supportive housing heads to B.C. legislature

14,000 people have signed a petition to change the use of the housing facility under construction

A group of Rutland residents has collected more than 2,800 pages of signatures to show their opposition to a B.C. Housing project slated for 130 McCurdy Road, which would allow legal drug and alcohol use.

A total of 14,547 individuals signed the petition over the course of two weeks and on Sunday the signatures were handed over to Liberal Kelowna-Lake Country MP Norm Letnick.

“This took hundreds of volunteer hours to pull together and get done, many volunteers and thousands of people standing up for kids and seniors, signing their names, so that our government might change course and stop placing our children and seniors at risk… if we don’t stand up for our kids/seniors, who will?” said organizer Audra Boudreau in a Facebook post.

Letnick will present the petition to the B.C. Legislature on Monday, Nov. 25 after the question period. He will be making a brief statement and introduce the petition, which reads; “The petitioners request that the development at 130 McCurdy Road in Kelowna be ceased until public consultation occurs, perhaps looking into more suitable potential uses for the property.”

While the number of signatures would strongly suggest that the residents of Kelowna strongly disagree with the use of the McCurdy development, there is no guarantee the Minister will waiver in her initial decision to maintain a “wet” facility.

“I think the province already sent their decision to the people of Kelowna when the minister said that they would go from a first stage to a second stage facility, I think she basically made up her mind to ignore the petition and it is unfortunate that she’s taken that perspective,” said Letnick.

“As the voice for my constituency in Victoria, I believe that the petition should be respected and that the minister or BC housing should meet with residents and come up with a solution that would meet the needs of everyone.”

Boudreau hopes the residents’ signatures will persuade the provincial government to change its decision and use the building on McCurdy to house other people in vulnerable situations such as low-income, seniors or students.

“It is my sincere hope that the B.C. government changes their course, at least for the facilities here in Rutland. And that I have done right by you all with what I have tried to accomplish here for Rutland.”

“It would be so easy for B.C. to instead create rehab spaces, or low-income seniors/student housing. Or, if they want to continue down this road to nowhere that shreds billions of taxpayer dollars each year, at least have the decency to place these facilities nowhere near other large vulnerable populations and family-oriented neighbourhoods that will be harmed in the process. I hope they hear us.”

READ MORE: 14,147 signatures hard for Kelowna mayor to ignore: organizer

In July, Boudreau led the charge in collecting 14,147 signatures in protest of the McCurdy housing project.

Boudreau then brought the signatures before Kelowna city council, where Coun. Charlie Hodge put forward a motion to reconsider the rezoning for the B.C. Housing project slated for McCurdy.

But his motion was defeated, with only Hodge voting in favour of the reconsideration. The project, however, will change from a “wet” facility to a facility that will not allow the use of illegal drugs on-site, according to a statement read by Mayor Colin Basran prior to the motion for reconsideration.

At the time, Basran said the people who will live at the McCurdy facility will be further along in their journey to recovery. They will have experienced homelessness or may be at risk of homelessness, but they will have identified their need and desire for support in their recovery, he added.

The facility at 130 McCurdy is expected to be finished construction by 2021.

READ MORE:Kelowna’s McCurdy house gets operation model redesign


@Niftymittens14
daniel.taylor@kelownacapnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A second wave of COVID-19 is probable, if history tells us anything

B.C.’s top doctor says that what health officials have learned this round will guide response in future

Water recovery team stands down search for missing man in Stellako River

Jason Bouchard was in a boat with a friend that overturned in the river May 16

COVID-19: Increased federal funding for off-reserve Indigenous services welcomed news in north

Funding to benefit organizations such as friendship centres during pandemic

COVID-19: PG Community Foundation to disperse community support funds

$197,630 in funding announced by the Prince George Community Foundation

CGL workforce will gradually increase to 650 workers by end of May

The pipeline company provided a project update on May 21.

B.C. First Nation adopts Dr. Bonnie Henry, names her ‘one who is calm among us’

Gitxsan officially adopts the provincial health officer in a May 22 ceremony

Kelowna man charged with harming a hamster

The 20-year-old Kelowna man faces several animal cruelty charges

High tech fish transport system set up to ‘whoosh’ salmon past Big Bar landslide

Fish will spend roughly 20 seconds inside the system, moving at roughly 20 metres per second

Trudeau to seek 10 days of paid sick leave for Canadian workers, says talks are ongoing

Paid sick leave is key to keeping COVID-19 spread under control, prime minister says

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

Snowbirds jets will not be leaving Kamloops, just yet

The Snowbirds have been in Kamloops since May 17 when a plane crashed killing Capt. Jennifer Casey

COVID-19 checkpoints ‘up to them,’ Bonnie Henry says of remote B.C. villages

Support local tourism economy, but only if you’re invited in

Vancouver Island hasn’t seen a new homegrown case of COVID-19 in two weeks

Island’s low and steady transmission rate chalked up to several factors

Most Read