Smithers council has approved $ 8,000 in funding for extra cleanup where a homeless camp is located.
The funding is coming from the general surplus that staff has access too.
Residents in the area of Fourth Ave have voiced concern about a camp that is appearing in the green space.
This is not the first time homeowners have had camps in this area. In a letter to the council that was read at Tuesday’s (Sept 10) meeting. There was voiced concern about being woken by partying, fights, RCMP vehicles, and fire trucks. They have even seen men urinating on their back fence.
The letter said they feel like they have no privacy in their homes, as well as garbage and used needles. A member of the public told council she found a syringe in her backyard and feels uncomfortable living in her own home and constantly keeps her doors locked.
Councillor Gladys Atrill said she was moved by the letter.
“It’s heartbreaking and I think we all felt it around the table and we’re motivated to do the best we can to come up with a solution for the neighbors that are being affected,” she said.
According to Councillor Thomas, there is a lack of emergency shelters in the community and it will continue to be a problem as we approach the winter months.
Councillor Atrill also said people in the community have all kinds of issues that the council can’t work through well.
“There’s not that cut and dry solution, I guess we could make a very hard decision and displace people but all we’ll be doing is a relocation,” she said.
Council did encourage residents who are having these issues to continue to call the police.