urban waste

I am not sure why this Downtown Hamilton building is empty when the streets around it are full of homeless people. In some countries 'squatters rights' give people the right to move into empty buildings and live there. Once in the building, the 'squatters' have similar rights to tenants and they cannot be evicted without a court order. If Hamilton had a law like that people might have moved into this building and fixed it up long before it started to rot. But it seems that in Canada the right of landlords to let empty buildings rot take precedence over peoples right to find a home. Here there are few laws or viable government programs to help the poor or homeless. The government, however, does have a program that gives thousands of dollars in free money to the wealthy landlords of empty buildings to fix up their properties for commercial use. Another government project gives property tycoons millions in interest free loans to turn downtown buildings like this into luxury apartments to sell at a tidy profit - in Hamilton ten million dollars has already been allocated in this program - to me this sounds like socialism for the rich and capitalism for the poor! Why not establish squatters rights and give the ten million dollars to homeless people and then support them in turning empty buildings into affordable housing?

No comments: