Former Vancouver Mayor Kennedy Stewart has tweeted about the East Hastings decampment, saying, “Welcome to Cruel Vancouver.”
On the heels of a significant announcement by the City of Vancouver about removing tents and structures from East Hastings Street, the former mayor entered the conversation with some fiery thoughts.
On Wednesday morning, Stewart reflected on the October 15 civic election last year, tweeting, “85,732 of you voted to elect a new mayor and council who today abandoned our attempts to reconcile with Indigenous people and resume traditional genocidal practices.”
The former Vancouver mayor added, “Welcome to Cruel Vancouver,” and hashtagged #Vanpoli and #UNDRIP in his tweet about the East Hastings decampment.
The tweet has already garnered some blowback, with some calling it “INSANE” and others suggesting they made the right choice in voting for Ken Sim. However, many others have liked the tweet.
This is one INSANE tweet…. can’t believe this guy was our mayor.
Vancouver made the right decision.#vanpoli https://t.co/MQkyyuHkqK
— Mauro Francis (@MauroAFrancis) April 5, 2023
On March 8, 2021, 2 campers had 'Never had thier tent cleared by the city so quickly' as when they had set up near the then-Mayors residence.
Is that location now on offer for future campers?https://t.co/YOMgqdop7c
— Kooriki (@KoorikiFox) April 5, 2023
One user who claims to be an urban planner responded to the tweet and said, “Respectfully Mr. Stewart, your administration failed to control our streets, [and] maintain safety of all Vancouverites, incl. those hard to house.”
He added, “You allowed it to fester which meant hard decisions and difficult approaches like today were required. This rests 100% on your failures.”
Before today’s tweet from the former Vancouver mayor about “Cruel Vancouver,” Stewart has been relatively active on Twitter, but until today his tweets mostly strayed away from political conversations.
The decampment of tents and structures in the Downtown Eastside has been ongoing, though work escalated on Wednesday. The Vancouver Area Network of Drug Users has been tweeting photos of the ongoing decampment efforts.
Councillor Pete Fry is here. Residents demanding answers as to why there is no housing being offered. pic.twitter.com/8mb5dSOKpn
— VANDU (@VANDUpeople) April 5, 2023