Human Rights Watch – Nanaimo Report and Call to Action
Are Punitive Measures the Ethical Way to Deal With Homelessness?
‘Homelessness is a profound assault on dignity, social inclusion and the right to life. It is a prima facie violation of the right to housing and violates a number of other human rights in addition to the right to life, including non-discrimination, health, water and sanitation, security of the person and freedom from cruel, degrading & inhuman treatment.’
(Leilani Farha, former UN Special Rapporteur
on the Right to Adequate Housing)
We acknowledge the continued good works of the many caring and compassionate agencies, services, churches, non-profits and private individuals who make up Nanaimo’s vibrant social safety network.
We acknowledge Nanaimo’s police and bylaw authorities and their unenviable task of dealing with the explosive crisis surrounding the issues of homelessness, mental health and drug addiction. The Nanaimo Report is a critique of just one aspect of a much larger and multi-layered whole and is not intended to diminish the other good
works of these agencies.
We acknowledge the efforts of Nanaimo City Council in their advocacy for/securing funding for temporary, supportive & affordable housing.
We would also like to acknowledge the Snuneymuxw First Nation, upon whose unceded territory we are guests.
Over the past year the Nanaimo Street Initiatives (NSI) team and some of its supporters have witnessed an aggressive and heavy-handed campaign conducted by the R.C.M.P. and Bylaw Enforcement officials to rid Nanaimo of its homeless problem. It is our commonly held opinion that the campaign is punitive in nature and that its intent is to harass and harangue the most vulnerable of our citizens – including those dealing with mental health and addiction issues – in the hopes they will leave the downtown core, and/or leave town altogether. This document poses the question: is punishment and harassment the right and ethical way to solve our homeless problem? The purpose of this document is to first, explain specific incidences which have occurred over the past year in Nanaimo re human rights violations and second, to send a strong message to the authorities (and those who direct and dictate their actions), that the ‘cruel, degrading and inhuman’ treatment of our homeless community is unacceptable.
- of or as punishment: relating to, done as, or imposed as a punishment
- creating burden: causing great difficulty or hardship
1. The first example deals with the dismantling of the Wesley St homeless encampment on December 3rd, 2020. The Nanaimo News Bulletin reported the fire was started by an exploding propane tank…arson is suspected….several tents were burned…one camper sustained burns to his legs…everyone was evacuated…the camp was permanently shut down. NSI has interviewed numerous occupants (particularly those whose tents were not affected by the fire) and collected signed statements claiming the occupants were escorted by the authorities back into the encampment for one last time and given five to ten minutes to collect their valuables and whatever they could carry with them. Nanaimo News Bulletin reported ten to fifteen minutes were given.
Why only five to fifteen minutes???
Why not an hour…why not two…why not a day? The occupants were given one hour to completely vacate Wesley St (with all their tents and all their belongings) five mornings a week, every week, so that the street could be cleaned. We at NSI strongly suspect that the decision to give the camp occupants only five, ten or maybe fifteen minutes to collect their belongings was designed to ensure that the sixty-to-seventy occupants were separated from their tents. Those perfectly good tents were subsequently bull-dozed and trashed after the area was cleared. All of them. Not one occupant was allowed to retrieve one single tent or its remaining contents.
The ill-conceived decision to destroy all those perfectly useful tents was a clear violation of the occupant’s human right to shelter. This
decision inflicted a punishing blow to the Wesley St campers.
2. The second example is related to the first and concerns the forced evictions of the Wesley St occupants, along with their tents and belongings, at 7am each morning from Monday to Friday. As mentioned, the campers were given one hour (7am – 8am) to completely vacate Wesley St and haul all their tents, carts and belongings to a vacant lot across Franklyn St where they were told to wait two to three hours while the street was cleaned. Once the street cleaning was complete the campers were given the ok to haul everything back. (NSI has taken dozens of photographs which show the dehumanizing scale of the daily evictions).
Being rousted out of bed at 7am with little or no time to wash up or eat breakfast and then forced to drag your tent, your shopping cart and all your belongings to a vacant lot a block of two away…and then wait two or three hours and then haul it all back….five days a week…certainly qualifies as ‘cruel, degrading and inhuman’ treatment. Many campers, for fear that their stuff might be stolen or confiscated, were forced to remain in the vacant lot with their tents until 10am, and sometime as late as 11am…which meant they couldn’t even get to the 7-10 Club for breakfast.
While photographing these events an NSI volunteer spoke to one bylaw enforcement officer who empathized with the camp occupants and wished there was another way. One suggestion we floated was to alternate week days (do Monday, Wednesday and Friday with a day off in between), thereby mitigating a measure of stress and trauma to the campers. The occupants enjoyed two days off on the weekend anyway and the world didn’t fall apart. And besides, two extra days off during the week would’ve certainly been welcomed by the R.C.M.P. and bylaw enforcement who, no doubt, had better things to do with their time.
The following link contains photos of the daily evictions from Wesley St. The images also provide viewers with a sense of just how many tents & other possessions were destroyed by the authorities when the encampment was dismantled. Please click: https://nanaimostreet.org/slideshow/
3. In September, 2020 – three months before the Wesley St encampment was dismantled – NSI participated in a two-hour telephone conversation in which an official from the City of Nanaimo Community Planning Department gave a detailed over-view of the city’s accomplishments, plans and strategies in terms of how it deals with the ever-growing homeless problem. The over-view of course included Wesley St. At one point in the conversation the city official admitted that the City of Nanaimo did not have a plan for the eventual closing of the Wesley St. encampment. The official added that the city’s hope was that the camp occupants would simply ‘disperse’ and return to where ever they came from before they joined the encampment. There was also the hope that the break-up of the Wesley St encampment would help to decentralize the drug culture prevalent within the encampment.
The above conversation occurred three months prior to the Wesley St encampment being torn down. This document (The Nanaimo Report) was penned three months after the tear down and we have now seen what the foreboding term ‘did not have a plan’ actually looks like. Dispersing 60-70 shell-shocked camp occupants (without their tents) into an already over-crowded downtown core was essentially adding one crisis to another already existing crisis. A double whammy. The impact of the double crisis is laid out in the rest of the report.
4. The next example has to do with shopping carts. In the spring of 2020, NSI began hearing complaints from homeless people saying their shopping carts and possessions were being snatched up by bylaw enforcement officers, particularly when the person was temporarily separated from the cart. This happened to some of our street clients as well. We sent a letter to the city and bylaw citing this rash of complaints and used the words ‘unethical’ and ‘aggressive campaign’ in the text of the letter. We received back from the head of bylaw an email disputing our claims. That should’ve been the end of it but we decided to dig a little deeper into this issue.
Thanks to a fine bit of sleuthing on the part of NSI’s communications person we uncovered three pieces of credible evidence suggesting there was in fact an aggressive campaign to rid Nanaimo streets of shopping carts. The first piece of evidence was an article buried in the Nanaimo News Bulletin (dated April 2020) which stated bylaw enforcement had picked up 650 carts from Oct 2019 to April 2020 (six months). The second piece came from the same article which reported that the City of Nanaimo had budgeted $187,000 (during that same time frame) to fund a new task force whose main purpose was to assist the bylaw enforcement department with the rounding up of shopping carts. The third piece of evidence came in the form of information from a reliable source within the bylaw enforcement office itself (our source will remain anonymous) who stated that, according to internal records, between 1,200 and 1,250 shopping carts had been picked up between October 2019 and October 2020 (a one-year period). This does not include all the make-shift camps, tents, bags and other possessions picked up and trashed.
Granted, some carts were actually abandoned but the sheer volume of carts rounded up certainly supports the homeless community’s claims of a concerted campaign to rid the city of shopping carts…regardless of their contents. One of NSI’s clients (who is wheel-chair-bound) claims that on four separate occasions within a one-month period she had her carts and/or bags scooped, usually when she was at the medical clinic, showering at Caledonia Park or at the Welfare office.
(Note: It is a sad indictment of the city’s questionable treatment of our homeless community that most of the items collected during NSI’s fall and winter clothing drive went towards replenishing items confiscated and trashed by bylaw enforcement).
5. The NSI team has collected numerous signed statements testifying to many instances of shopping carts or personal possessions being scooped by bylaw enforcement while homeless people were separated from their stuff. We would like to share one such incident. A Nanaimo citizen (who will remain anonymous) was sitting in his vehicle – parked on the casino parking lot in front of the pine trees – enjoying a leisurely afternoon (Saturday Feb 13, 2021) and witnessed the following events:
At approximately 1:30 pm the eyewitness observed a man walk up to a disabled homeless lady who was lying on the ground under the trees and grab something from her person and then run off. Predation and theft are rampant among the homeless community and incidences like this are rarely, if ever, reported. The witness followed the robber with his vehicle, alerted police and then returned to the casino parking lot. He briefly spoke to the disabled lady and confirmed that she had in fact been robbed of cash. Later that afternoon, between the hours of 2:30 and 3pm the disabled lady picked herself off the ground and slowly hobbled her way over to the Port Place Mall, most likely to use the rest room. The lady left her shopping cart and all her possessions under the pine trees. The eyewitness estimates she was gone about a half hour. During that brief time frame the witness observed two bylaw enforcement trucks quickly pull up and throw her shopping cart (with possessions) into one of the trucks and drive off. When the disabled woman returned from the mall and noticed all her possession had been taken she laid down on the ground and remained there for some time. An NSI team member showed up at the scene around this time and after being briefed by the eyewitness, snapped a couple candid shots of the victim (see below). Out of respect for her privacy, the woman’s name will not be used and the photo has been altered to protect her identity. A digital copy of the witness’ signed statement can be made available by contacting NSI.
(BTW, within the next hour the homeless lady was provided with warm clothing and sleeping bags by generous individuals and passersby in the downtown core).
6. Nanaimo Street Initiatives has taken between five and six hundred photographs over the past year, many from the Wesley St encampment (including the daily forced evictions) and the rest from Nanaimo’ homeless community in general. We decided not to weigh this document down with tons of photos and instead provide readers with the means to contact NSI to set up a private showing.
But there are two or three photographs (including the above disabled lady under the trees) that needs to be displayed here that so completely ‘drive home’ the central thrust of this report which is the mean-spirited and punitive approach to solving our homeless problem. First, a little background.
When the Wesley St camp was dismantled in early December, sixty or seventy occupants quickly scattered throughout the downtown core. Nanaimo’s weather this past winter was particularly harsh…cold, rainy, windy, and miserable … especially if you’re stuck outside without any shelter. Because the authorities had decided to destroy all those useful tents back at Wesley St, the displaced campers were all scurrying around trying to find whatever shelter they could in doorways, over-hangs, under bridges, tarps or under trees, etc. Nanaimo’s existing homeless/un-sheltered population just in the downtown core was roughly between 80-100 so when the Wesley St bunch was added, things became very chaotic…really quickly.
It was at this point that police and bylaw authorities began a concerted and relentless effort to make things as difficult as possible for the itinerant campers. No one was allowed to rest and relax for very long (from the cold, the wind and the rain) before they were shunted off to another over-hang or under another bridge. One such group, numbering roughly fifteen to twenty, was told they could camp overnight at Caledonia Park. Across Wall St was a picnic ground with a large shelter used by picnickers during the summer months. Because it was raining – and the picnic grounds were not used in the winter – most of the group went across the street and huddled inside the picnic shelter. The NSI team was present throughout these developments, providing warm clothing, blankets, water and other necessities. We left later that evening knowing the campers were at least out of the rain.
The next morning we arrived at the shelter and were stunned….during the early morning hours the authorities and/or city work crews had evicted the occupants and completely barricaded the shelter with metal fencing, similar to the metal fencing used to barricade Wesley St. We then snapped a few quick photographs for posterity.
The photo below speaks volumes about the often-times vicious attitudes held by some (perhaps many) of our citizens towards Nanaimo’s homeless community. Erecting that fencing around the unused picnic shelter was outright mean…it was heartless…and just one more example of the abusive treatment our homeless citizens have endured over the past six months. The photo encapsulates everything that is wrong with Nanaimo’s punitive approach to problem solving. It screams out to our homeless community – and the rest of the world – that homeless people are not welcome in this city.
7. It is now spring. It would ‘appear’ that the punishing winter campaign to rid Nanaimo’s downtown core of its homeless people has been, to some degree, successful. The street population has noticeably thinned out since early December when the Wesley St encampment was razed. But, appearances can be deceiving…and in this case they most certainly are. The campaign, in fact, has not solved Nanaimo’s homeless problem at all…it has only displaced it. The City of Nanaimo has turned into one great big game of ‘whack-a-mole’ where homeless folks, tired of the harassment, have fled to the burbs, regional parks or whatever hiding places they can find. A few may have even left town.
But, they have not disappeared.
Nanaimo is sitting on a powder keg and the fuse – being time – is lit. Our homeless count was 174 in 2016….we will surpass 600 in 2021 (which represents a quadrupling of our homeless population in only five years). And in three more years or so – once we factor in the economic impacts of Covid-19 and the ensuing global recession – we will be flirting with the 1000-plus threshold. So where do we go from there? Will we still be relying on these draconian methods to deal with problems we can’t solve? Will we still be criminalizing, vilifying, ostracizing and punishing our homeless community when we cross that ominous threshold? The punitive approach to solving our homeless crisis has been an abject failure…all it has achieved in doing is to further alienate that segment of society who needs the most care and compassion. If we are to weather this gathering storm a major attitudinal shift – by a segment of our population – will be required. We will need leaders who are creative and forward thinking…leaders with vision, courage and an unwavering respect for the rights, dignity and humanity of all citizens, including the homeless.
8. The following is an excerpt from ‘A National Protocol for Homeless Encampments in Canada’:
‘Principle 3 prohibits forced evictions of homeless encampments. International human rights law does not permit governments to destroy peoples’ homes, even if those homes are made of improvised materials and established without legal authority. Governments may not remove residents from encampments without meaningfully engaging with them and identifying alternative places to live that are acceptable to them. Any such removal from their homes or from the land which they occupy, without the provision of appropriate forms of legal protection, is defined as a ‘forced eviction’ and is considered a gross violation of human rights. The removal of residents’ private property without their knowledge and consent is also strictly prohibited.’
(Leilani Farha, UN Special Rapporteur on the right to adequate housing April 2020)
A key element missing from this document is the homeless community itself…they need to have a ‘say’ in this report…they need to have a voice. Unfortunately, city hall has been conspicuous by its absence in terms of its obligation to communicate and consult with that particular group of citizens who are most in need and who have suffered greatly through this past winter. This absence is not only a dereliction of duty but also creates a disconnect between city hall and the homeless community. The real danger here is that the absence, combined with the disconnect (and under the cover of the pandemic) can act to create an environment in the downtown core where police and bylaw authorities (and/or those who direct their actions) have free rein in how they deal with the ever-growing homeless crisis.
The NSI team has decided to provide our homeless community with a ‘voice’. We will be circulating a city-wide questionnaire over the next two weeks that invites our homeless citizens to say a few words, (i.e., signed statements) about the treatment they have received at the hands of police and bylaw authorities over the past year – which includes the Wesley Street fiasco and a nasty winter. They will also be invited to comment on the number of times their possessions and property have been confiscated and trashed and how they feel about all this.
It is NSI’s intention to submit a sampling of these questionnaires to the mayor and city council when the Nanaimo Report is completed in late April 2021.
The NSI team cannot over-stress the importance of ‘A National Protocol for Homeless Encampments in Canada’. To download this document:
The first solution: Have a plan. Much of the trauma and dehumanizing treatment experienced over the winter months by Nanaimo’s homeless community – as well as the frustration felt by the police and bylaw authorities who have clearly lost control of the situation – can be traced back to the fact that the city did not have a plan for post-Wesley Street. It’s not rocket science. Throw sixty to seventy fairly damaged and needy human beings – without their tents – into Nanaimo’s tiny little downtown core which is already over-run with homeless folks and you’re asking for trouble. How much metal fencing will the city have to erect before they realize the lunacy of such a strategy? It really is a sign of how desperate the city has become when Nanaimo’s brain trust thinks hundreds and hundreds of feet of metal fencing will solve the problem.
As we careen heedlessly towards the 1000-plus threshold in our homeless count the City of Nanaimo needs to awaken to (1) the reality of just how quickly our homeless and housing crisis is spiraling out of control and (2) how absolutely crucial (and long overdue) it is that the city step up to the plate with some bold, daring and creative ideas on how to mitigate this unfolding humanitarian crisis. (Yes, BC Housing has plans to open 4 permanent supportive housing complexes hopefully starting in the fall of 2021 but that is cold comfort for the many homeless citizens who are suffering and in need of housing right now).
Other municipalities in the immediate vicinity are bending over backwards to come up with bold, daring and creative ideas. They are purchasing land and motel/hotel properties to house their homeless citizens. Vancouver’s mayor and city council recently purchased the Days Inn which will accommodate sixty-five of their homeless and recently the Vancouver mayor and city council also voted unanimously to decriminalize street drugs. In the first week of April, the city of Victoria purchased a major hotel/motel complex that will be ready to house ninety-two homeless people by the end of April. Look what’s happening in Duncan with Mayor Michelle Staples and John Horn (Exec Director of Cowichan Housing Association & Co-Chair of the Covid-19 Vulnerable Population Task Force). These are bold, daring and creative thinkers doing whatever it takes to turn this crisis around.
P.S. We heard so much about the proposed Navigation Centre that was scheduled to open this spring (which is right now). Recent enquiries discovered the project – which is expected to eventually house sixty-five people – has not even made it past the zoning process. This is a travesty…considering the dire situation at the street level.
The second solution: Decriminalized street drugs. Drug addiction is not a criminal offense…it is a disease…and should be treated as such. We don’t treat people who are addicted to alcohol, cigarettes, television, junk food, gambling, prescription drugs or sex as criminals. We provide treatment centers, counseling and support groups for these kinds of addictions but anyone addicted to recreational drugs or street drugs is immediately branded a criminal. It’s irrational. By decriminalizing street drugs, the addiction to them then becomes a health issue and not a criminal issue. There are significant benefits to decriminalization. One benefit which resonates with this report is that the human rights of the addict would be better protected. Another benefit would be the overall savings for Canadian tax payers, who ultimately pay for policing, prisons, the criminal justice system and the legal industry. Decriminalization would also free up law enforcement to go after the real criminals…the drug pushers.
The third solution:
‘Modern, progressive western industrial societies are, to a large extent,
the authors of their own misfortunes. And, until we accept this most unpalatable and inconvenient truth – that we do in fact create our own problems – we will never be able to proactively and constructively deal with the homelessness, mental health and drug addiction crisis plaguing our city. Thus, it is incumbent upon our city (and its citizens) to acknowledge, accept, embrace and take ownership of the crisis.’
The ownership approach could be a ‘game changer’ if enough of the major players and stakeholders come on board. For some, the ‘taking ownership’ approach would require a fundamental shift in the way they think and strategize. Instead of trying to get rid of the homeless and drug addiction problems (a very costly exercise in futility) this approach actually embraces these afflictions and views them, not so much as a problem, but as a monumental challenge that the city – as a whole – can take on.
Nanaimo is still a small town. The general scale of our homeless community is relatively small as well…compared to Vancouver or Toronto or even Victoria. So, being a small town, it would be easier to affect the necessary shift in attitudes, say from ‘reactive’ to ‘proactive’ or from ‘we just want them to get the hell out of our city’ to ‘ok, it’s our problem, we own this, so what can we do to help solve it’.
The fourth solution: Initiate a Guaranteed Basic Income program. (This is a Federal issue but directly impacts Nanaimo‘s homeless crises, therefore the City should advocate for this.) There is strong evidence to support the claim that a guaranteed income (in the range of $2000.00/month for example) would provide many of Canada’s homeless citizens with the funding for safe, affordable housing and food security. Yes, the program would be open to abuse from some, but the homeless community (in general) is suffering from the harshness of life on the streets and most would jump at the chance to secure adequate housing. Emergency/temporary housing projects such as Labieux Rd., Newcastle Place and Prideaux Place were designed only as temporary ’stepping stones’ towards better living conditions. The Guaranteed Basic Income concept would go a long way towards reducing the reliance on these types of facilities (including homeless shelters). The cost of such a program would be more than offset by the savings and benefits…less policing and Bylaw enforcement, a significant reduction in crime, loitering and littering, less need for emergency and temporary housing (including staff, etc.) A safe, stable and healthier living environment would also facilitate healing, rehabilitation and could also lead to employment opportunities.
The central tenet of Restorative Justice – for Canada’s Aboriginal Peoples – is the understanding that all human beings are fundamentally and intrinsically ‘good’. Yes, it is in our nature to make mistakes from time to time, to screw up and make a mess of things. But that does not detract from the essential goodness within the person. The NSI Team chooses to view our homeless community through the same lens.
The N.S.I. Team:
- Dennis, who is a Nanaimo resident, has been involved with advocacy & volunteer work in Nanaimo’s downtown core for nine years.
- Lynn, a long-term Nanaimo resident, has been active for many years with the City of Nanaimo’s coalitions to end family poverty & homelessness.
Call to Action
The Nanaimo Street Initiatives (N.S.I.) will be presenting this report to the City of Nanaimo (and related authorities) towards the end of April 2021. For those readers who support and endorse the Nanaimo Report and would like to add their names and locales (emails are not necessary) to the following list, please email any member of the N.S.I. Team and supporters listed below:
Dennis Lakusta Nanaimo firstname.lastname@example.org
Lynn Burrows Nanaimo email@example.com
Kim Goldberg Nanaimo firstname.lastname@example.org
Myra Thomson Nanaimo email@example.com
Dyane Brown Nanaimo firstname.lastname@example.org
Gary Bandzmer Vancouver email@example.com
Keira MacKay Nanaimo firstname.lastname@example.org
Tom Sandborn Vancouver (honorary member)
Lyn Pinkerton Vancouver (honorary member)
Anne Roberts Vancouver (honorary member)
Signatories for the Nanaimo Report
|Tom Sandborn||Vancouver||Evelyn Pinkerton||Vancouver|
|Jim Manly||Nanaimo Regional District||Eva Manly||Nanaimo Regional District|
|Marjorie Stewart||Lantzville||Susie Hammond||Nelson|
|Herb Hammond||Nelson||Jeanie Patterson||Nanaimo|
|Noah Ross||Denman Island||Lauren Semple||Nanaimo|
|Frances Deverell||Nanaimo||Fred Pattje||Nanaimo|
|Susan Garcia||Nanaimo||Donna Kurulak||Nanaimo|
|Wynna Jorgensen||Nanaimo||Paulette Roscoe||Nanaimo|
|Theresa Hood||Nanaimo||Angela Waldick||Nanaimo|
|Alan Reimer||Nanaimo||Kimberly Mitchell||Nanaimo|
|Jesse Grey||Nanaimo||Richard Fortin||Nanaimo|
|Noel Lewis Watts||Nanaimo||Andre LaFlame||Nanaimo|
|Mariam Mnguni||Nanaimo||Linda Harvie||Nanaimo|
|Val Wilkins||Nanaimo||Terry Porter||Nanaimo|
|Gloria Jorg||Nanaimo||Jerrett Beauregard||Nanaimo|
|Carolyn Wilkinson||Nanaimo||Nathan Johnson||Nanaimo|
|Kelly Murphy||Nanaimo||Shawn Phillips||Nanaimo|
|Barbara Johnston||Nanaimo||Arnel Wasden||Nanaimo|
|Jennifer Skogland||Nanaimo||Candace Lansing||Nanaimo|
|Sheila Crampton||Nanaimo||Derrick McFarland||Nanaimo|
|Frank Murphy||Nanaimo||Rob Boucher||Nanaimo|
|Susana Michaelis||Nanaimo||Jim Akitt||Nanaimo|
|Mary Ann Moore||Nanaimo||Marie Burrows||Nanaimo|
|Inge Bolin||Nanaimo||Ruth Makaroff||Vancouver|
|Donna Birkinshaw||Nanaimo||Louise Vergnano||Cardigan, P.E.I.|
|Linda Fraser||Nanaimo||Pamela Woodland||Victoria|
|Rick Brink||Nanaimo||Meghan Murphy||Victoria|
|Tanya Hiltz||Nanaimo||Elizabeth Aman Hume||Port Hardy|
|Jonathan Cheffins||Nanaimo||Ursula Vaira||Lantzville|
|Megan Boichuk||Nanaimo||Diane Young||Ladysmith|
|Paul Glassen||Nanaimo||Sandy Knight||Victoria|
|Johanna Peters||Nanaimo||Bill Hurst||Vancouver|
|Rosita Rivera||Nanaimo||Barbara Curry||Nanaimo|
|Myrna Broughton||Nanaimo||Pam A. Brown||Nanaimo|
|Frank Moher||Gabriola Island||Kari Fetherston||Nanaimo|
|John Bullas||Gabriola Island||Sonya Makaroff||Vancouver|
|Eveline Rathie||Vancouver||Ulrike Hobruecker||Vancouver|
|Kathryn Hazel||Nanaimo||Suzanne Gregory||Nanaimo|
|Nicole Shaw||Errington||Mayta Ryn||Nanaimo|
|Lavonne Garnet||Nanaimo||Nick Dudink||Nanaimo|
|Meredith Martin||Courtenay||Jackie Moad||Cedar|
|Marg Barrie||Nanaimo||Pelé Gouda||Nanaimo|
|Marilyn Huffman||Nanaimo||John Oh||Nanaimo|
|Richard Powell||Nanaimo||Lianne Smithaniuk||Nanaimo|
|Debbie Rose||Nanaimo||Bob Hansen||CVRD – Cowichan Valley|
|Sara Frisch||Yellow Point||Sarah Schmidt||Nanaimo|
|Keira MacKay||Nanaimo||Kyle Rodway||Nanaimo|
|Doug Cately||Nanaimo||Michelle Cately||Nanaimo|
|Evelyn Zhou||Nanaimo||Sue Averill||Nanaimo|
|Donna Mae Verner||Nanaimo||Jade Corbett||Nanaimo|
|John Drew||Nanaimo||Jordan Dyer||Nanaimo|
|J Rumley||Nanaimo||Mark O’Hara||Gabriola Island|
|Patricia Nataucappo||Nanaimo||Margie Grimble||Gabriola Island|
|Julia Roberts||Nanaimo||Ian Gartshore||Nanaimo|
|Kevin Donaghy||Hamilton, Ontario||Carollyne Leighland||Nanaimo|
- Stone Soup Nanaimo
- Women’s International League for Peace & Freedom, Nanaimo Branch
- Silva Forest Foundation, Nelson BC