Remember Richard – No More Homeless Deaths, Gathering and Vigil
Monday, December 30th
Carlton/Church (outside of the Loblaws)
On Monday, December 23rd, around noon, a homeless man named Richard Ian Kenyon was found dead at the busy corner of Carlton and Church outside of the Loblaws. Richard was a part of the Downtown East Community. He was in his early 50s, was homeless and stayed at a local shelter.
While we do not know what Richard's last day looked like, we do know that he was lying dead at a busy intersection of the City during the middle of the day. We know for a fact that on a busy shopping day just before Christmas many people must have walked by him and did what is all too common place - they chose to ignore a person lying on the ground. We also know that Loblaws raked in an exorbitant amount of money that day, while a man with nothing material to speak of, died just out front of their flagship store.
We also know that winter is a deadly season for many people who are homeless and that there are not enough resources and safe warm places for people to go during the day or at night.
The average life expectancy of a person who is homeless in Canada is a shocking 39 years old for women, and 46 years old for men. Homeless men are 8 times more likely to die then men of the same age in the general population. These deaths, of people well before their time, are preventable. The chronic lack of affordable, accessible and safe housing, the lack of an adequate income, the lack of sufficient programs and services, all contribute to the high mortality rates among homeless and underhoused people. As a result of these government decisions to prioritize profit over human lives, our communities experience loss at a rapid rate.
Join us Monday, December 30th to remember Richard and all those who have died too soon. Join us in calling for action on homelessness - everyone deserves safe, affordable, and accessible housing. Everyone deserves enough income to live with health and dignity. Everyone deserves a warm place to rest in the day-time. Everyone deserves a chance to live out their life to the fullest.