Boffo Properties and the Kettle Friendship Society have used at least three PR companies to try to manufacture consent for their proposal to build a massive tower complex on Commercial Drive. Those companies don’t come cheap. Can you imagine how much more useful that incredible waste of money could have been had it been spent on actual services for those suffering with mental illness?
The efforts of all these companies have resolved into KettleBoffo’s latest slogan that says, in effect, if you don’t support our tower you are opposed to “inclusive community”. What on earth does that mean?
The KettleBoffo project includes up to 200 market-priced condos and “up to” 30 supportive housing units for Kettle clients. Expensive condos are everywhere in this city, and so we can discount any thought that “inclusive” refers to those. That leaves only one other possible meaning: their “inclusive community” slogan is simply a rewrite of the old canard that opposition to Boffo’s massive for-profit tower is the same as rejection of mental health housing in Grandview.
This lie — for that is what it is in plain language — completely ignores the fact that this community has steadily supported the Kettle and its work for the last forty years. More importantly, perhaps, it also seeks to hide the fact that there is already a considerable amount of mental health housing in Grandview through organizations such as Coast Mental Health — housing that has been organized and operated without any of the controversy that has surrounded the KettleBoffo tower project.
The organized opposition to the Boffo Tower has made it clear — over and over again — that they support the Kettle’s expansion with 30 supportive housing units. Moreover, they have worked hard to suggest alternative financing mechanisms that would allow the Kettle to expand without being in thrall to a for-profit developer.
The community has made it clear they do not want a massive high-rise on the Drive. It is about time we told the Kettle and Boffo that we want money spent on mental health services not on propaganda for a big lie.