Wednesday, 16 July 2008

Homeless 'removed' for World Youth Day?

More Than A Bed....? Sydney's Homeless Speak Out and what a shocker for World Youth Day. So what does it all mean? Should we wait for the Pope or should we give these disadvantaged, marginalised and broken people somewhere to sleep for the week. Jesus?

Kevin Simpson from Homeless Voice says men and woman who normally sleep in the city or the Domain have been moved out by authorities.

"I am a little bit surprised they haven't taken more care of the actual people who Jesus came for and that's the disadvantaged, marginalised broken people," he said.

Homeless Voice says during APEC people who sleep on the streets were offered accommodation in motels but not so during World Youth Day.

Shane normally sleeps in the Domain car park.

"Since the Pope and that's been in town we've had to relocate to this open park and if it rains we're sort of buggered, we've got no wind block," he said.

World Youth Day organisers say all Catholic welfare groups remain in operation.

But WYD coordinator Bishop Anthony Fisher says the soup kitchen offered in the city has had to be shifted to a neighbouring suburb, Woolloomooloo.

"I know some of them have moved in order to ensure the privacy of those homeless people so they're not surrounded by pilgrims, so they can eat their soup in privacy," he said.

World Youth Day: Hundreds of thousands of pilgrims are using venues around Sydney.

Quote: And you can see the photo with the big crowd which is meant to press Bishop Anthony Fisher's point, but hardly. You see we are social beings and I don't think the homeless, broken people would have been bothered by pilgrims. In fact that may have made them feel a lot better about their current plight.


Housing crisis forcing people to sleep rough
The study is contained in a report, More Than A Bed: Sydney's Homeless Speak Out, which will be launched today by Mr Garner and Federal Housing Minister and Member for Sydney Tanya Plibersek.

Welfare services under strain: survey

The number of people accessing community services is on the rise, a new survey shows.

Report warns new wave of homelessness
State and federal governments are being warned of a new wave of homelessness threatening disadvantaged families.

Court dumps WYD 'annoy' law
Two Sydney activists have won a Federal Court challenge to special World Youth Day laws which carry $5500 fines for annoying or inconveniencing pilgrims.

100k pilgrims expected at WYD opening mass
More than 100,000 pilgrims are expected to attend the first major event of World Youth Day in Sydney today, the opening mass. Pilgrims from countries including Spain and Canada gathered at St Mary's Cathedral next to Sydney's Hyde Park overnight to watch the clock strike midnight and mark the start of World Youth Day activities.

Youth Day laws 'crept up on us'
The state's community legal centres are calling for an inquiry into the expansion of police powers in New South Wales ahead of World Youth Day. The Combined Community Legal Centres Group has investigated the way new powers have been given to police by the State Government, especially for last year's APEC summit in Sydney.

Youth Day laws 'undermine basic rights'
The New South Wales Bar Association says new regulations for World Youth Day undermine basic rights and are an affront to freedom of speech. Under the new regulations, people who refuse to stop engaging in conduct that causes annoyance or inconvenience to pilgrims can be arrested and fined up to $5,500.

Tough police powers outlive APEC
CONTROVERSIAL powers granted to NSW police during last year's APEC summit are likely to be made permanent - or at least available to police for any special event - under a proposal to be taken to state cabinet. The powers made it possible to exclude people from certain zones during the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit in September. Police were given extraordinary rights to search people.

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