A spat has erupted in Vancouver City Council over a decision to cut funding to the Downtown Eastside Residents’ Association, because of its relationship with the radical Anti-Poverty Committee.
The NPA recently voted to cut a city staff-approved grant to DERA to provide services to Chinese seniors.
Coun. Peter Ladner pointed to links with the APC, a group whose members have been charged with carrying out criminal acts during protests.
For example, APC member David Cunningham has pleaded guilty to two counts of mischief and is also a DERA employee.
But Vision Vancouver and COPE argued that DERA should have received the money anyway.
“To say these two organizations are the same is flatly wrong,” said COPE Coun. David Cadman, who praised DERA’s work over the past 30 years.
While the groups often collaborate on housing and poverty, he said the grant had nothing to do with those issues.
“In some sense, DERA’s a front for the APC,” Ladner alleged.
Losing funding is the price DERA pays for associating with those committing illegal acts, he added.