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ACORN Nova Scotia continues to grow, establishes Dartmouth chapter

Grassroots activism and patient organizing pay off for anti-poverty organization

by Robert Devet

Jonethan Brigley, long-time ACORN Nova Scotia member, addresses a community meeting in Dartmouth North. Complaints about landlords were a common theme.  Photo Robert Devet
Jonethan Brigley, long-time ACORN Nova Scotia member, addresses a community meeting in Dartmouth North. Complaints about landlords were a common theme. Photo Robert Devet

K'JIPUKTUK (Halifax) - At a community meeting in North Dartmouth last night Nova Scotia ACORN formally established its second chapter in metro. ACORN is a membership-based national organization for those who live on a low or moderate incomes.

Black mould, asbestos, bedbugs, vermin, rowdy neighbours, and leaking ceilings were common complaints at the meeting, attended by about twenty residents.

People also mentioned defective toilets, doors without doorknobs or not closing properly, leaking fridges, and arrogant and even bigoted superintendents. Most complaints were directed at MetCap, a prominent landlord in the area.

“People screaming and hollering day and night, slamming doors, I am tired and fed up,” one of the people at the meeting told the group. “When I rented that place, MetCap told me it was a quiet building, but they don't do any tenants' screening, they're only interested in money.”

Patient but persistent organizing is paying off for ACORN Nova Scotia. The organization now has formal chapters in both Halifax and Dartmouth, and has enjoyed a remarkable growth here over the last two or three years.

“It's important to fill the gap for those on low and fixed incomes,” Darryl explained to the Halifax Media Co-op. Darryl is a long-time member of Nova Scotia ACORN, who asked that his last name not be used.

“There is a real need for an advocacy group to take their issues on. What is the little person going to do on his own?” he asked. “Together we have more of a voice.”

“Treat people like you want to be treated, with respect and dignity, and provide them with a safe and comfortable home,” he said. “And if that's not happening than we can step in, take it to the press, maybe have a peaceful rally.”

“We're making a difference, but it takes time,” Darryl said.

A rally will be held outside of the MetCap office on Tuesday, September 30th

See also:

Metro Housing tenants tired of cockroaches and bedbugs

Lively community meeting tackles landlord licensing and rent control

Follow Robert Devet on Twitter @DevetRobert

 


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