Manure dumped on a known homeless gathering spot in Abbotsford has some local advocates outraged, and the people at the site – located across from the Salvation Army on Gladys Avenue – displaced.
Nick Zurowski has been staying at the site – known by some frequenters of the area as “The Happy Tree” – occasionally for some time. He said he was sleeping in the area with a few other men when people came by and started dumping manure on the site.
The men were told to move, and they relocated to a new spot farther down the road.
Jesse Wegenast, a minister at 5 and 2 Ministries – a group that supports and provides services to Abbotsford’s homeless – said the act targets the city’s most vulnerable population.
“I’m incensed. For something like this to happen is so indicative of how the city feels about these citizens.”
Wegenast later visited the city to speak with bylaw enforcement, who said they are doing what they can to address the issue.
The City of Abbotsford issued the following statement from city manager George Murray:
“As city manager, I take this situation very seriously and retain full responsibility for the manner in which we dealt with this incident. I am deeply sorry for our actions.
“The City will be removing the manure from the site and working closely with our community partners and the people impacted over the next few days to collectively resolve this issue.”
No representatives from the city were available for further comment on Wednesday.
Check abbynews.com for updates.