This issue seems to be receiving a great deal of press in recent months, so you can check out some of the articles below. People trying to eat well while living on the streets face numerous obstacles. Edible food is being thrown away and locked up or destroyed by hazardous chemicals. Those without a home also have trouble cooking the food that they do have because of by-laws that prohibit cooking outside.
The video clips of the Victoria Fire Captain show how hard it can be to make an ethical choice in the midst of so many unconstitutional municipal by-laws.
Independent Journalist Arrested For Filming Arrest of Homeless
Tuesday February 14, 2006 - By Janine Bandcroft
Cook Street's Food Country grocery store has hired security guards, who work in concert with Victoria police, to keep people from reclaiming food that they throw away... and then poison. Filmmaker Andrew Ainsley spent a night in jail for filming the arrest of two dumpster divers at their store.
One of the security guards admitted, on tape, that bleach is intentionally poured into the dumpster - to permanently destroy the food. "I know people who were sick from eating food that's been bleached," Andrew reports. "So I set up a camera inside a van, and put a wireless mic on one of the dumpster divers. They're wasting money and time arresting people for sleeping, eating, and loitering - which is, essentially, simply existing."
The Victoria Police Department will spend 2 million dollars, collected through a 2.2% property tax increase to hire and administer 6 new police officers. "People I talk to don't want cops arresting people for taking their garbage." Andrew explains.
This is not the first time Andrew has been arrested for video-taping public altercations with police. With new 'no loitering' rules being enforced in the 'private property' courtyard outside the library, the opportunity to gather in a covered area, protected from the elements, is now considered criminal behavior.
Read a Letter to the Police regarding this issue.