Complaints filed against Vancouver police for targeting Downtown Eastside with bylaw infractions

first_imgAPTN National NewsVancouver police are targeting the poor people of Downtown Eastside with an abundance of bylaw infractions from jaywalking to public urination according to newly released information.According to a report, 95 per cent of some bylaw offences have been enforced exclusively in the troubled neighbourhood.Statistics show that 1448 tickets were given out in the Downtown Eastside under the Street and Traffic Bylaw over the last four years, with the next closest neighbourhood, the downtown core, receiving only 28 according to information obtained through a Freedom of Information request by two Vancouver organizations.The infractions range from vending, jaywalking, public urination/defecation and spitting.Wally Oppal, head of the Missing Women Commission of Inquiry, recently agreed in his final report that issuing such tickets creates a barrier between police and the poor.Oppal recommended police and the city should reduce the number of tickets they give out.As a result complaints have been filed against the police department alleging discrimination hoping to have them follow Oppal’s recommendations.“These tickets have many negative consequences for people in our community; increasing stress and anxiety among already marginalized people because they have a ticket they cannot hope to pay,” said Aiyanas Ormond, community worker with the Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users (VANDU), who along with Pivot filed the complaints.last_img

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