Lowincome services ordinance heads to Vancouver City Council

first_imgIt’s taken nearly a dozen meetings and more than two years to develop a plan to repeal and replace the rules that govern how and where low-income people are assisted in Vancouver.On Wednesday, the Vancouver Planning Commission, which is an advisory group, voted to send the revised Human Services Facilities ordinance to the city council.The planning commission doubled down on its initial recommendation, known as Option A, to reclassify human service facilities and implement conditional use permits and performance standards for shelters, day centers and soup kitchens. This recommendation comes despite the city council’s request to reconsider tacking on additional standards and fees that may unintentionally burden service providers.Essentially the question is this: Should the city hold homeless service providers to high standards, even if they are cost-prohibitive? Or should the regulations be relaxed in hopes more providers will deliver more services?There’s a legal component too. Since Vancouver’s current siting ordinance was adopted in 1991, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected similar laws, raising concerns the city could be sued. Specifically, the city is concerned about lawsuits relating to discrimination against physical abilities and familial status as outlined in the Fair Housing Act.last_img read more