Local community advocate Angie McLeod is organizing a pop up affordable housing awareness campout event this Friday, May 17. McLeod felt inspired to do something visual to demonstrate the city’s housing crisis. Numbers in articles and locals upset by unaffordable rent online is one thing, she feels, but actually seeing the number of people struggling with housing is another.
McLeod reached out to various individuals within the community about a pop up event. The response was overwhelmingly positive.
With a group of supporters at her back, McLeod is encouraging anyone who feels that the lack of affordable housing is an issue in Revelstoke to participate, starting this Friday at dusk. Participants, McLeod notes, are welcome to put up a tent and leave it onsite for the duration of the weekend, or to stay and camp. Interested individuals can email McLeod at (firstname.lastname@example.org) to recieve an email on Friday detailing the specific site chosen for the demonstration.
“Each tent can have a posted sign with the number of people and pets in their household,” McLeod says. “Rental increases or property taxes too high? Renovictions unfair? Unsafe living conditions? Maintenance being neglected? Pop up a tent to represent your concern. Out of town? Send me a message and we can add you and your household’s concerns to this community effort. Need to stay close to home? Pop up a tent in your backyard and email a picture.”
McLeod stresses that this is a peaceful and respectful show of concern. “There is to be no parking, alcohol, or glass. Sites should be left clean with all items packed out. Biking, hiking and carpooling is recommended. All tents will be taken down and areas cleaned up by noon on Sunday May 19th.”
“The event is May 17 just before nightfall so we can have photos taken by residents photographers to show how many locals have been negatively affected by recent housing issues,” she says. “The idea is to encourage community leaders to make necessary decisions to support affordable and safe living conditions for all Revelstokians. The living wage in Revelstoke is now $75,000 per year. Most tourism and hospitality jobs in town pay minimum wage or slightly more.”
McLeod says anyone who would like to demonstrate their concern through this respectful pop-up event is welcome. She is in need of volunteers to help with transportation, greeting campers, photography, clean up and the set up of a large community drop in tent.