The Pivot Legal Society will be defending the Anita Place Tent City against an injunction application from the City of Maple Ridge on Monday in Supreme Court.
The city started the injunction process to have the camp removed last month, the day after downtown businesses complained about crime, threats, discarded needles and other issues creating a loss of business
The city cited growing health and safety risks at the camp, saying camp residents are not complying with the fire department safety orders.
Ivan Drury, of the Alliance Against Displacement, said camp residents have asked B.C. Housing that it provide Maple Ridge with 200 modular housing units to get decampment at Anita Place.
”For months, Pivot Legal Society has been negotiating in good faith with the City of Maple Ridge, along with the provincial government and B.C. Housing, to find workable solutions to housing residents of Anita Place that would meet their needs and shelter them from the violence of the surrounding community,” said a press release from Pivot.
“On Oct. 25, the City of Maple Ridge unexpectedly announced [it was] seeking a court injunction, to which Pivot, along with a team of private bar lawyers, and lawyers for the provincial government are responding.”
The case will be heard at 9:45 a.m. at the B.C Supreme Court on Smithe Street in Vancouver.
Anita Place tent city, which currently houses between 60 to 80 people, was first set up on May 2 after Maple Ridge’s shelter, run by RainCity Housing, closed permanently.
Pivot Legal Society is a Canadian human rights organization that aims to “use the law to address the root causes of poverty and social exclusion in Canada.”
Since 2002, it has won court victories for sex workers’ rights, police accountability, affordable housing, and health and drug policy.