Wednesday, October 13, 2004


Underbelly News
Downtown Eastside

Hi All!

The following is a letter I sent to Mayor Campbell regarding my concerns over the resignation of Kelly MacDonald, a police board member.

October 13,2004

Dear Mayor Campbell,

As an aboriginal individual, please know how troubled I am by Ms Kelly MacDonald's resignation from the Vancouver Police Board.

I think whatever caused her discomfort and pain needs to be sorted out. Not addressing this issue leaves many unanswered questions.

Imagine what it's like for those of us of aboriginal ancestory, who believed we finally had a voice at the police board. A voice who would work to ensure our issues were not swept aside.
Ms MacDonald brings forth a wealth of experience in aboriginal policy and law. In my opinion this expertise benefits Vancouver. It demonstrates to the world that Vancouver really is an inclusive, tolerant city which values all its citizenry.

Obviously, one assumes that since you along with your council appointed Ms MacDonald to the board, she would have the needed support as a visible minority woman to effectively do her job. Her sudden resignation though leaves gaping holes.

Mr Campbell, it is in tough times when the mettle of a leader comes through. You as Mayor of this city and as Chair of the Police board should now exercise strong leadership.
For you to publicly state that you have no idea why Ms MacDonald chose to resign shows an uncaring attitude. Have you thought of perhaps phoning Ms MacDonald to see what her concerns are. Perhaps you could articulate to Ms MacDonald that the police board is open to solving any differences there may be.

Mayor Campbell, let me finally say that if this issue with Ms MacDonald isn't resolved than other scenarios can be imagined. Sadly one can be whether you have the necessary skills, during tough times to lead this city.

I hope Mayor Campbell you do the decent and honourable thing. Do whatever it takes to ensure the the knowledge, caring and passion of Ms MacDonald is not lost. I hope to see her seated at the policy shaping table at the next police board meeting.


Jamie Lee Hamilton


Underbelly News
Downtown Eastside

Hi All

I have copied a letter to the editor, posted below from the Vancouver Courier. This letter provides a snapshot of what is wrong in the Downtown Eastside. First though my imput.

As some of you are aware, I live in a DERA building. In my building lives a husband and wife. This couple, on fixed income, 16 months ago had a baby. They were to be transferred to another DERA operated building which houses families. Our building was built for singles and seniors. For 16 months this needy couple have not been transferred to our family housing complex. This, even though two units became available. Why do I know this. Well I'm on the DERA board.

IT MUST BE NOTED that DAVID CUNNINGHAM, a DERA staffer and his WIFE, JILL CHETTIAR, a PORTLAND Community Services staffer are both spokespersons of APC (anti poverty committee) . They were given a subsidized suite at the DERA family bulding even though their baby was born only two months ago. Mr Cunningham and Ms Chettiar, BOTH EMPLOYED, were provided that suite instead of the couple on fixed income. Talk about shameful acts on the part of DERA and APC. It should also be noted that Mr Cunningham also has a bachelor pad at another DERA subsidized building. Talk about the ife of luxury.

Jamie Lee Hamilton
(604) 781-3361


Exploiting poverty for political gain despicable

To the editor:

Bravo for bringing to light the uncivil disobedience practised by David Cunningham under the banner of APC ("City will be ready for next profane outburst," and "Cunning activist a disruption," Oct. 3).
Cunningham is a shining example of how the extremist elements of the left-wing underground co-opt legitimate social justice movements to further their own political agenda.
The majority of APC members are not aware they are being manipulated by a political anarchist. They truly believe he has their best interests at heart.
The Anti Poverty Committee in Vancouver is a blue print of APC Toronto. That chapter used physical violence to make its points during the 1990s by damaging both private and public properties. Their aim is to turn local governments into chaos, not to alleviate poverty. They quickly lost public sympathy and support with their antics in Ontario.
When APC was founded in Vancouver, it claimed, off the record, to have learned its lessons in Toronto and promised to use peaceful means out here. A legal rep for APC approached people from a number of religious organizations for support in order to legitimize their presence in our community. However, Cunningham's loathing for all people who are not hardcore communists is revealed in his utter contempt for, and disruption of, civil society.
Poverty is a tragedy. Exploiting that poverty for political gain is despicable. I think it's high time David Cunningham be exposed for who, and what, he truly is.

Kirsten Ebsen, Vancouver