80 million dollars from province for rooms to help the homeless

Byline: Jim Goddard and Shane Bigham
VANCOUVER (NEWS1130) – Premier Gordon Campbell and Vancouver Mayor Sam Sullivan have announced a plan to help reduce homelessness in the city. The provincial government is making an $80 million investment in helping solve the problem.
Almost 1,000 more units of supportive housing will be created, with 910 in Vancouver and the rest in Victoria and Burnaby. The province is purchasing 10 single room occupancy hotels in Vancouver. Premier Campbell says this is just the first step and more announcements will be coming.
Mayor Sullivan is declaring this day as one where we turn the corner on homelessness. But one social geographer at SFU says the ‘tide’ may not be turning as fast as the mayor hopes. Professor Nick Blomley says it will take a lot more needs to be done. “I wouldn’t call it a turning point. The number of street homeless has doubled over the past 3-4 years in Vancouver. This is only a small step.”
Blomley says a coordinated effort is needed to help the homeless, one that includes, welfare, healthcare, addiction and housing. Also, he says the need right now in Vancouver is greater than what’s been announced today, so much depends on future announcements promised by the provincial government.
The Salvation Army, which deals with many of the people who live on the street, says they’re pleased by the announcement.