Welcome To
Acadia Broadcasting NewsThe Latest and Greatest ContentYour Trusted Local Source


Tents at Grand Parade Photo: Megan St. Rose

No electricity, people in ‘panic mode’ at Grand Parade, says volunteer

By Caitlin Snow Mar 1, 2024 | 12:56 PM

Power has officially been cut off from tent sites around the city on a very cold Friday.

This includes Grand Parade and the Correctional Centre in Lower Sackville, two of the five that were ordered to be evacuated.

Matt Grant volunteered at Grand Parade for over 100 days alongside Stephen Wilsack.

He told our newsroom that some unhoused at Grand Parade, do not know what they are going to do.

He said the options presented by the city are not going to work, for various reasons, and people are panicking.

“The people that continue to occupy Grand Parade Square right now, have experienced shelter life and it doesn’t work for them.”

He added that to help keep the unhoused warm, Good Samaritans arrived Friday morning with propane and heaters, with temperatures well below zero.

No place to go 

The city gave the eviction notice for the five encampments, earlier in the month, saying better options exist and that living outside is a risk.

However, Stephen Wilsack said, there are very little housing options for those living rough.

“Shelter pellets aren’t here, we have no spaces available at the other places throughout the city that normally are available, it literally is zero occupancy.”

The city says they will work with individuals on a case-by-case basis to see what the barriers are for them, to get indoors; but Wilsack said, although staff have been on site, there have been no conversations one-on-one.

He added the province needs to have a ‘housing first’ outlook with hundreds and hundreds of options and a concrete plan on how to address the current crisis.

In a statement, HRM gave notice on Wednesday that as of Friday, electricity would be cut off and that the roughly 29 people still in the encampments ordered to leave, would have to pack up their things.