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Vancouver's 'Shelter Benches' For the Homeless

 
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CherryBlossom View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote CherryBlossom Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Vancouver's 'Shelter Benches' For the Homeless
    Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 12:29pm
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/vancouver-shelterbenches-show-up-londons-antihomeless-spikes-as-how-not-to-deal-with-rough-sleepers-9565941.html

Vancouver shelter-benches show up London’s ‘anti-homeless’ spikes as how not to deal with rough sleepers


The benches offer shelter from the Vancouver rain - and advice about where to seek more long-term help

When the management of a block of luxury flats in London felt they had an issue with homeless people sleeping on the doorstep, their solution was apparently to install a set of spikes that were later branded “ugly, self-defeating and stupid” by Boris Johnson.

The Mayor faced criticism himself for not doing more to deal with the growing number of people sleeping rough in the capital – so perhaps he could look to the work of a charity in Vancouver for inspiration.

RainCity Housing, which provides specialised accommodation and support services for homeless people in the Canadian city, has set up instant pop-up shelters that take the form of an ordinary park bench.

During the day, the innovative design simply works as the back support to benches where people might sit and eat lunch or while waiting for a bus.

But at night, the boards fold out upwards, providing emergency cover in what is – like London – a notoriously rainy city.

The imaginative designs from Spring Advertising in Vancouver aimed to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness in the cityThe imaginative designs from Spring Advertising in Vancouver aimed to raise awareness of the issue of homelessness in the cityThe dual use of the bench has been highlighted in one of the designs from Vancouver creative agency Spring Advertising. UV letters react with sunlight and read “This is a bench” during the day. At night, a separate set of glow-in-the-dark letters emerge to say “This is a bedroom”, and directs rough sleepers to RainCity’s website.

Another design says “Find shelter here” on the bench’s back support. When lifted up, it encourages the user to go one step further and “Find a home here” – listing the address of a RainCity refuge.

Bill Briscall from RainCity said that while there are only a handful of the benches across Vancouver at the moment, they have already helped to raise awareness of its serious homelessness issue.

A row of one-inch-high studs, which protesters claimed were designed to prevent people sleeping rough, were spotted outside a Tesco Metro on Londons Regent Street just days after after a similar strip of spikes were photographed outside a luxury block of flats in Southwark (pictured).Homeless studs outside a London flatMr Briscall told The Telegraph: “We don’t know if they have been used by homeless folks, but probably. In a park one block from my house I see people sleeping overnight almost every month throughout the year.”

The scandal over the “anti-homeless” spikes in London earlier this month saw a branch of Tesco Metro remove a number of studded slabs which it said were to prevent anti-social behaviour like smoking and drinking outside the store.

It brought further attention to the fact that homelessness under Mr Johnson was up 60 per cent over the previous two years, according to the most recent figures, and led to an online petition calling for the Mayor to “do more to help these people instead of isolating them further”.

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JasmineE02 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JasmineE02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 12:41pm
This story gave me all of the feels.  I'm really glad they're taking this approach.  I hope it encourages other people to think of creative methods instead of just shifting the problem to someone else. CryClap 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote Alias_Avi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 12:55pm
Well that's just humanly...
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gkisses Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 1:14pm
I wish people would be more creative and proactive with ways to solve homelessness instead of finding ways for homeless people to be more comfortable with their homelessness I understand that they leave a message on the stand but I think more should be done
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JasmineE02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 1:38pm
All you can do is point them in the direction of services.  Once they reach out for help, they're usually given a case manager who helps connect them to long-term help and care.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Gkisses Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 1:40pm
I mean before it gets to that point. Ppl to often think folks are homeless because of drugs or alcohol while ignoring the root causes.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote JasmineE02 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 1:46pm
Ah, I see what you're saying.  Well, I always recommend http://www.needhelppayingbills.com/ when I run across someone in need of help.  I also remind them to see if 2-1-1 is available in their area.  A lot of the women I've worked with were homeless or one minor offense away from being homeless.  I hate it for them and their families, but I try to spread the word that there is help out there.  
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Diane (35) Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 2:22pm
Amazing!!!!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (3) Thanks(3)   Quote beebeexx Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 2:26pm
Originally posted by Gkisses Gkisses wrote:

I wish people would be more creative and proactive with ways to solve homelessness instead of finding ways for homeless people to be more comfortable with their homelessness I understand that they leave a message on the stand but I think more should be done


comfortable... with their homelessness...

i bet you think making half decent fashionable plus size clothes encourages obesity too.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (1) Thanks(1)   Quote ThoughtCouture Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Jun 26 2014 at 2:48pm
believe it or not there is a tiny % who prefer being "free" if that makes sense.  anyway, i like this.  it's at least a step in the right direction for advertising to those wishing to get some help... 
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