top of page

Letter to Council: In support of Addressing Ongoing Inequities... Across South Vancouver and Marpole

This week Vancouver City Council will consider a motion to address the historically under-resourced neighbourhoods of South Vancouver and Marpole.


For the past six months, WTC has delivered workshops to South Vancouver Neighbourhood House throughout their Reframing South Vancouver Initiative. This initiative brought community members together to voice the challenges they face from unsafe sidewalks, to food insecurity to feelings of being left behind by the City.


Since 2021, Reframing South Vancouver "has engaged over 2000 South Vancouver residents and stakeholders, and organized or participated in over 50 community engagement events".


Read their report created with SFU that lays out the needs of these neighbourhoods that have gone unmet in South Vancouver for far too long.


Read the letter we sent to Council and send your own message in support of this motion and our South Vancouver and Marpole neighbours.


 

June 27, 2023


Re: Addressing Ongoing Inequities by Improving Social Infrastructure and Access to Services Across South Vancouver and Marpole Neighbourhoods


Dear Mayor and Council,


Women Transforming Cities (WTC) is writing in support of the motion to address the historic under-resourcing of South Vancouver.


One of our organization’s goals is to reduce barriers faced by folks historically excluded from civic processes. As part of this work, we deliver workshops in partnership with grassroots organizations across the Lower Mainland to increase the participation of low-income, Indigenous, racialized, trans, and disabled women, Two Spirit, and nonbinary people from engaging with municipal government.


Over the last 6 months, WTC has delivered three workshops at the South Vancouver Neighbourhood House (SVNH) to build the skills and understanding of members of the community of the civic process. One of these workshops was delivered with Danielle Johnston, the City’s Manager of Democratic Engagement on local government and ways to engage.

The Reframing South Vancouver cohort ranges from middle school students to seniors, from newcomers to Canada to folks who immigrated here decades ago. They come from a variety of backgrounds and speak numerous languages, and shared with us examples of the vast inequities affecting their neighbourhoods. They spoke about the lack of park benches, the unfixed sidewalks that make it difficult for strollers and wheelchair users to get around, and the food insecurity of their neighbours.


What has been so clear working with the cohort is how deeply they care about their community, and their commitment to being a part of finding solutions for the challenges they face.

This includes showing up to speak to council and share their stories. One member of the cohort is a grade 9 student who spoke to me about whether he can miss his band performance to speak to this motion. He told me that both were very important to him. A young mother worried that she might miss her speaking slot if she couldn’t get out of work at the particular time the motion is discussed.

Many of our systems are set up to exclude the participation of these very individuals. This group is a reflection of communities coming together to overcome those barriers and make sure that their voice is heard.


The team at South Vancouver Neighbourhood House has been consistently providing support to the residents of this vastly overlooked community and it’s time they don’t do it alone.


Please support this motion as is and vote yes to Addressing Ongoing Inequities by Improving Social Infrastructure and Access to Services Across South Vancouver and Marpole Neighbourhoods.


Sincerely,

Monique Nicholas, Digital Engagement Coordinator

Women Transforming Cities



Danielle Johnston, Manager of Democratic Engagement at the City of Vancouver and WTC staff member, Monique Nicholas speak to Reframing South Vancouver, June 2023


Danielle Johnston, Manager of Democratic Engagement at the City of Vancouver and WTC staff member, Monique Nicholas speak to Reframing South Vancouver, June 2023

Comments


bottom of page