The Pivot Blog
RELEASE: Downtown Eastside residents and workers continue to pursue accountability in complaints against two Vancouver Police Department officers
The complaints document a pattern of abusive behaviour by the two VPD officers, including harassment, intimidation, targeting Indigenous and Black people and interference in harm reduction responses in the DTES.
Civil, legal, and community groups request an investigation into a May, 2021 incident of unauthorized police enforcement activity related to COVID-19.
A broad-based Canada-wide coalition of human rights, drug policy, community, and drug user organizations are raising serious concerns about a proposed model for drug decriminalization that will be submitted to the federal government for approval. If adopted, the flawed “Vancouver Model,” as proposed by the City of Vancouver, could be a precedent-setting policy change—the first of its kind in Canada—that could pave the way for other cities to follow suit, including communities in Ontario, Alberta, and Quebec among others. It is therefore critical that this initial model gets decriminalization right by centering the health and rights of people who use drugs, as well as the needs of their loved ones and communities.
Strathcona camp residents issue a human rights report card to province and city on decampment process
As unhoused people are evicted from Strathcona Park, they look to local and international human rights laws to evaluate government decampment strategy and, based on these laws, issue a significantly low grade of “D”
Parents and Educators Call on the Vancouver School Board to Immediately Cancel the School Liaison Officer Program.
Last month, the VSB released an independent review of the program, completed by Argyle Consulting. The review notes the negative impact of police in schools for Black and Indigenous students, notable as Black and Indigenous youth remain disproportionately criminalized.
Pivot Legal Society writes the Vancouver Police Board to urge them to: "substantively engage with the individuals, communities, and organizations that are calling for defunding the VPD as a matter of survival"
Over the last year, we have witnessed the VPD push back against even the most modest budget cuts - despite layoffs, hiring freezes and cutbacks which impacted both unionized and non-unionized staff at the city.
Advocates Call on the Vancouver School Board to Immediately Cancel the School Liaison Officer Program
PRESS ADVISORY: Prior to the VSB Trustee Meeting to discuss the School Liaison Officer Program, Justice for Girls, Pivot Legal Society and Cops Out of Schools will be holding a press conference at the VSB entrance.
Joint letter (HLN, CDPC, and Pivot) urging Vancouver to develop a “Vancouver Model” for decriminalization that is appropriately broad and responds to the aspirations and needs of people who use drugs.
Threshold amounts must be appropriately high in order to eliminate both the abuse of police discretion and the enforcement and confiscation of below-threshold amounts.
Over 20 organizations are calling on the City of Vancouver to invest in non-police interventions that support people who are impacted by homelessness, toxic drug supply, mental health distress, and those working in informal economies and criminalized industries, such as sex work
There is truly no time to waste. We urge Health Canada to listen to the health and human rights experts who have already spoken about this, follow the public health evidence, and issue these exemptions quickly, without onerous and unnecessary conditions or restrictions. Lives and health are at stake.
The VPD’s Trespass Prevention Program is another deliberate attack on poor and unhoused people. Once again, police expend vital public resources to criminalize people who rely on public space.