Collaboration wanted on ‘unhoused’ persons

Clive, Ab
Written by Stu Salkeld

Clive village council heard the municipality is taking a collaborative approach on “unhoused” people. The report was made at the Oct. 23 regular meeting of council.

During the regular report of Chief Administrative Officer (CAO) Carla Kenney councillors heard an update on how the village responded to an unhoused person in the community.

“Unhoused individual presenting in the village Oct. 17,” stated Kenney’s update to council. “Administration is working with partners to develop strategies to manage future situations and developing communication material to inform the public how to better interact with disadvantaged and unhoused individuals,” the report continued.

“The RCMP have authority to detain or remove individuals from the village only when an offence is alleged or grounds are identified under the Mental Health Act.”

During discussion the CAO stated the village reached out to community partners to help the unhoused person and in the future the village plans to work with partners including Family and Community Support Services (FCSS) for emergency housing in a situation like this one.

Kenney also stated Clive acknowledges it doesn’t have a lot of experience with unhoused people and she suspected having a plan in place is best because it may happen again.

Deputy Mayor Tracy Hallman stated she felt the village staff did a great job of handling the situation and agreed having a plan in place is a good idea as this may happen again.

During discussion councillors mentioned people making “concerning” comments on social media about the unhoused person who appeared in Clive and comments appeared to show some people were afraid of the person.

Readers should note the term “unhoused,” defined as a person who doesn’t have a dwelling place or shelter, is usually used to replace an older term, “homeless,” which some consider derogatory.

Reviewing the bylaw
Kenney presented the results of a community survey conducted to gather input on a revised land use bylaw (LUB).

During discussion the CAO noted community feedback was “interesting, a lot of positive things” and added that 42 people participated in the survey. In the results, when participants were asked to describe Clive with one word, the top response was “peaceful.”

After presenting the feedback Kenney stated if councillors had anything they wanted to add this was their chance because village staff would be meeting with the professional planner soon to discuss the revised bylaw.

As councillors looked at responses they noted four issues were among the top concerns: shipping containers (or sea cans as they are often called) being used for storage in residential areas, derelict vehicles, garage heights and tiny homes.

Councillors unanimously passed a resolution that these four issues be included in the LUB as priorities.

Village happenings
Kenney noted in her CAO report the village received a complaint of vandalism at Simple Ties Park; the complainant asked that the wooden train structure be repaired and kept as a play structure.

She also noted the village received a request to address the mole problem on the undeveloped south end of 52 Street.

Stu Salkeld
Local Journalism Initiative reporter
ECA Review

About the author

Stu Salkeld

Stu Salkeld, who has upwards of 28 years of experience in the Alberta community newspaper industry, is now covering councils and other news in the Stettler region and has experience working in the area as well.

He has joined the ECA Review as a Local Journalism Initiative Journalist.

Stu earned his two-year diploma in print journalism from SAIT in Calgary from 1993 to ’95 and was raised in Oyen, Alta., one of the communities within the ECA Review’s coverage area.