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Owners send in guards to remove residents
[Ontario Edition 1]
Toronto Star - Toronto, Ont.
Author: Moira Welsh and Michelle Shephard
Date: Sep 25, 2002
Start Page: A.07
Section: NEWS
Abstract (Document Summary)

Mary Halton, a Home Depot spokesperson, said the company contracted the security firm "several weeks ago" to create an action plan for the residents' removal. They sent their own security officers to Tent City to "monitor" the actions of the residents and were unhappy with the reports. "We were seeing an increased risk to health and safety, particularly an increase in criminal behaviour," Halton said. "We came to understand that there was potentially drug dealing on the site and prostitutes on the site. In addition to people adding on to the structures, they were extremely unsafe from a fire perspective.

Joanne Wright rode her bike to the Cherry St. entrance. She was returning to her Tent City home after showering at a nearby homeless shelter. She said Home Depot, just last weekend, offered to pay Tent City dwellers $30 to clear up the grounds "and the rest of us did it for free." She was mystified about why Home Depot donated wood for the squatters to build homes.

Peter Power/toronto star FORCED OUT: Tent City squatters had to quickly grab what they could as security guards, with police present, rousted them yesterday morning. Guards let residents back in last night to get their belongings. The eviction went peacefully, with only two arrests. Ken Faught/toronto star FACES OF TENT CITY: Tent City residents Michelle Riley, left, and Dawn Lanski support each other at a City Hall meeting yesterday following the evictions. A distraught Lanski said she was forced out before she could take her heart medication, which was left back at Tent City.

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