Horgan says Maple Ridge’s approach to housing homeless ‘make believe’

City expects some better solution on the horizon: Horgan

As Maple Ridge’s mayor continues to be under fire for controversial comments made about the city’s homeless, Premier John Horgan didn’t pull punches while criticizing the city’s approach to housing the most vulnerable.

Horgan said during a news conference in Victoria Thursday that, where possible, there should municipal buy-in for supportive housing complexes that BC Housing wants to install in cities.

“But in the case of Maple Ridge, there’s a sense of make-believe, that somehow there’s a better solution on the horizon,” Horgan said.

“We’ve been grappling with this for two years, as the previous government did.”

Mayor Mike Morden said in a YouTube video last week that he sees Maple Ridge becoming “a hot spot in the Lower Mainland for people coming here to carry on doing drugs and basically raping and pillaging all of our community and our businesses and that’s got to stop.”

However, on Wednesday, he said those words were “an expression of frustration and probably weren’t appropriate.”

Coun. Kiersten Duncan has now asked Morden to apologize for the remarks, saying in a Tweet she’s “deeply concerned.

“I will be asking him to make a formal apology to council, residents, and the homeless residents he vilified,” Duncan added.

Morden continues to oppose B.C. Housing’s plans to build 51 temporary, low-barrier supportive housing units at 11749 Burnett St., on the same location rejected a year ago by the previous Maple Ridge council. He wants a facility that offers longer term mental health or drug treatment.

The online controversy is continuing with B.C. Housing releasing Facebook video vignettes about Maple Ridge residents who need housing.

Also Thursday, the B.C. Liberals called the province’s housing plan “botched,” and said Horgan is “forcing an unworkable plan onto Maple Ridge that doesn’t include enough mental health and addictions supports and is ignoring the huge rise in crime at a similar location the NDP forced upon Nanaimo.”

A YouTube Q and A info session about the Burnett Street supportive housing complex takes place next Monday at 7 p.m.

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

Chemainus & District Baseball Association season on hold due to COVID-19

Shouts of Play Ball! would normally have started being heard next week

Province restricts open burning across much of the Cowichan region

No new fires may be initiated in all high smoke sensitivity zones

Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

‘In moments of crisis, fear is very real and palpable,’ says SFU’s Peter Chow-White

COVID-19: Isolation exemptions to frontline workers a danger to patients, say Island Health employees

Staff exempt from self-isolation upon return from international travel according to Island Health

B.C. COVID-19 contact restrictions working, Dr. Bonnie Henry says

’Not out of the woods yet’ as next two weeks are critical

Long list of events disrupted by COVID-19 around the community

Challenging situation affecting fundraisers, entertainment, sports and more

Evening world update: U.S. restrictions extended 30 days; NY deaths near 1,000

Comprehensive world update, with the latest developments in the COVID-19 crisis

‘It’s up to us: Recently-returned B.C. couple urges Canadians to take COVID-19 seriously

Garrett Kucher and Tory Apostoliuk make it home after almost a week of lockdown in Spain

‘Nothing concrete’: Tenants, landlords lack details after B.C. unveils COVID-19 rental aid

Single mom in Golden says she’s already going to the food bank after being laid off

Canada will make sure masks sent by China meet quality standards: Trudeau

Chinese Embassy tweeted that China was sending 30,000 medical masks along with gowns, gloves and goggles

B.C. issues guidelines about distancing, reusable bags to grocery stores amid COVID-19

Hand sanitizer and markers to keep lines two metres are apart are needed, province says

No plans to call in military right now to enforce COVID-19 quarantine: Trudeau

Trudeau unveils $7.5M for Kids Help Phone, $9M for vulnerable seniors amid COVID-19

QUIZ: How much do you know about the Olympics?

Put your knowledge to the test with these 12 questions

Most Read