The Dawn to Dawn Action on Homelessness Society is working on a new initiative, in partnership with the K’ómoks First Nation and Comox Valley Pride Society, for 2SLGBTQ+ youth who are experiencing, or at risk of experiencing, homelessness.
The project is dubbed Gukwas sa Wagalus Rainbow House, which intends to address a gap in the social justice system when it comes to 2SLGBTQ+ youth, 16-28 years.
Dawn to Dawn outreach worker Grant Shilling sparked the idea for the project, which carries a name in two languages to reflect a desire to create a safe, secure house for Indigenous and non-Indigenous queer youth.
“Grant is our champion,” said project manager Lee Everson, who was accompanied by Dawn to Dawn president Ray Windsor in a presentation to Courtenay council Jan. 25.
They requested funding and exemption from municipal taxes should Dawn to Dawn purchase a home in Courtenay, as well as leniency on permitting and fees. They need about $1.5 million to acquire a suitable building. So far, the society has about $250,000 for the project.
Dawn to Dawn is proposing a five-bedroom house with a peer support live-in.
On April 14 and 15, Dawn to Dawn is hosting a drag show at the Sid Williams Theatre. The society hopes the city can donate its take of ticket sales. Dawn to Dawn is asking Comox, Cumberland and the regional district for the same donations.
Ace requests change in hours
The city will seek public input about Ace Brewing’s application to change hours of liquor sales, and to allow the patio to be permanent, at its premises at 150 Mansfield Dr. The brewery is presently open from 11 a.m. – 10 p.m. Sunday – Thursday, and 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday. It hopes to switch to 9 a.m. – 1 a.m. seven days a week.
Council endorsed Will Cole-Hamilton’s desire to stand for election to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities board from January to May 31. The FCM board comprises elected officials from across the country to form a broad base of support, and provide a united voice to carry the municipal message to the federal government. Last year, Cole-Hamilton was selected to sit on the B.C. caucus of the FCM.
Notices of motion
Cole-Hamilton forwarded two notices of motion to be discussed at a later date. The first is for a staff report to outline required steps and costs to become a living wage employer. Living wage refers to the hourly amount two working parents need to afford basic costs. Cole-Hamilton noted the city employs seasonal staff and retains contract personnel at an hourly rate lower than the $20.26/hour living wage.
The second notice is for a report to assess outdoor court usage by tennis and pickleball players. The report is to outline options to provide optimal use of courts.
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