By Abnor. I was making my way through downtown yesterday, accepting free coffees from anyone who would buy me one, and having several chats with some of the generous folk downtown when someone asked me if the homeless are being given the opportunity to lobby City Hall on their future?
I was up at the canteen at City Hall earlier in the week and I heard that the business owners and members of the executive of the Abbotsford Downtown Business Association (ADBA) have been wearing trails in the carpet on the 5th Floor with their lobbying efforts aimed at City councillors and Mayor Banman.
I think the ADBA even has a councillor who represents them too, as does the Abbotsford Chamber of Commerce.
Pretty good representation if you ask me. They seem to be having an impact too; what with Mayor Banman telegraphing his punch to ACS’ gut on the CBC last week.
The homeless are at a bit of a disadvantage on this one. Although the ADBA lobbyists have just as far to go to get to City Hall, very few of the homeless whose lives are being decided have cars (or bus fare for that matter). Few of them have landlines or cell phones it turns out and, for those who do, the Mayor’s phone number is not on speed dial.
Maybe if someone would volunteer to get a little short bus together we could bring the homeless from their current home, downtown, and ferry them up to City Hall for a bit of one-on-one, flesh-pressing lobbying.
That way they could wander around the 5th floor, from office to office, lobbying on their own behalf the way the ADBA does. It would be nice if someone at City Hall could set out some coffee and snacks the way they do for the Abbotsford Social Development Advisory Committee (ASDAC) meetings (to which no homeless folks seem to be invited).
I think my friends may be onto something. It’s the human touch that’s missing. Abbotsford politicians and business people see each other all the time. I’ve said it before … if we move the homeless up to City Hall they could live in John Smith’s ‘Friendship Garden’, bath in the City fountain and brush up on their literacy and job-seeking skills at the library.
The washroom up on the 5th floor could be made available and, with a few donuts and coffee, the politicians could meet and get to know the men and women whose lives they have been affecting with their longstanding policy of poisoning and harassing the homeless.
Then they would be out of the ADBA’s hair as well 🙂
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Editor’s Note:Abnor joins us from time to time with a question or two about what he sees around him. He has plenty of time on his hands and he spends a great deal of his time wandering the streets of Abbotsford wondering about what he sees and hears. He’s a modern day hobo with a Blackberry.