Published on: October 22, 2019

THUNDER BAY – A proposed youth transitional housing facility on Junot Avenue that has generated both support and opposition from people living the area will go ahead.

Thunder Bay city council voted in 6-5 in favour of a bylaw amendment Monday night to allow the facility to be constructed in the north-side neighbourhood.

When explaining why he was going to support the bylaw amendment, Coun. Andrew Foulds said it is time people in the city stop criminalizing people living in poverty, facing addictions, or living with a mental health issue.

“We see these things in our downtowns,” he said. “We see these issues in or neighbourhoods, we see it in our streets. The cost of these issues are enormous.”

Justin Marchand, executive director of Ontario Aboriginal Housing, said the location on Junot Avenue is ideal and was chosen out of six other locations due to it being the most cost effective, access to education and services such as shopping and medical care, easy access to public transit routes, and the large plot of land to allow for cultural activities.

“We want to help people to learn how to live independently and gain control over the decisions that affect their lives,” he said. “All you have to do here today is say yes, say yes to supporting truth and reconciliation and say yes to helping more neighbours.”

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