Wendy Pedersen and Ivan Drury of the Carnegie Community Action Project have been leading and organizing the protests at Pidgin Restaurant.

Below is the Week 2 Pidgin Restaurant Picket Schedule.

PiDGin restaurant picket schedule: week 2

12:00pm
Tuesday February 12 2013 – 11:00pm
Saturday February 16 2013
Venue: in front of PiDGin restaurant
Address: NE corner of Carrall at Hastings
The picket of PiDGin restaurant is continuing. Please come out and support. Here’s our schedule for WEEK 2:
Tues Feb 12: 12-1pm & 6-7pm
Wed Feb 13: 12-1pm & 6-7pm
Thur Feb 14: Women’s Memorial March at 12, picket 6-11pm (Food Not Bombs will serve free food!)
Fri Feb 15: 12-1pm, 6-7pm & 9-11pm
Sat Feb 16: 9-11pm and possible 6-7pm as well
NE corner of Carrall at Hastings, in front of “Pidgin” restaurant
Some reasons for picketing:

GENTRIFICATION DISPLACES low-income residents from their homes and community. As one senior poor resident said to picketers last week: “they want us out of here for sure.” As a First Nations resident said: “the police are asking us to leave Pigeon Park more now. We’re just sitting there not doing anything illegal.” Each new high end retail & condo project in the area cause ripples of gentrification: more real estate speculation, land values increase, rents go up, more low-income housing is converted or closed, yuppie stores move in, low-income stores close, residents no longer feel comfortable and at home, residents get more tickets for things like selling their belongings etc, police harassment increases, more homelessness. This process happens in every other big city with uncontrolled markets and it is happening in Vancouver right now.

PiDGin Restaurant is BLATANTLY VULGAR AND OFFENSIVE. Carrall Street is now a scene of gross disparity and the DTES has reached a saturation point where people’s housing and human rights are threatened. A plate of pickles for $6, an appetizer called “Tongue and Cheek” and $40 a plate main courses can be enjoyed at PiDGin, from seating intentionally designed (according to Scout Magazine) so that eaters can watch the “oft-sordid goings on” in Pigeon Park….the place where the victims of residential schools and other horrific abuses, have long congregated together, who describe their park as the one place that really “belongs to us”. This tectonic scene on Carrall can’t last too long as the shaming, policing & lack of housing will eventually drive unwanted & despised residents back into the margins where many will face worse neglect, hardships and danger. A First Nations woman pointed out to picketers how the images on PiDGin’s windows are “really gross.” Look closely at these images and see images of slaughter/wild animals/sexy women entertwined in a grotesque parody that reinforces the dehumanizing relationship created by PiDGin, between the eaters and the poor. Not only does PiDGin give permission to the eater to ignore the impact of their own presence, but also gives permission to ignore the poverty, the racist and gendered violence, ignore that the bottle depot next door is being moved, ignore that the women’s detox across the street just lost their funding, that a 15 story condo tower is slated to go up across the street, that Vision Vancouver made new zoning for more condos recently west of Carrall (and in Chinatown), that SRO hotels, the last housing before homelessness are falling apart and not being replaced —-and that the city is about to unleash their re-zoning revitalization forces again, but this time east of Gore, through the poorest area in Canada to Clarke Drive.

We will not ignore the impact of PiDGin.
Oppose PiDGin & Resist Gentrification.
No more high end retail.
No more condos.
Replace 5000 SRO’s with decent, resident controlled housing.
Protect the assets and tenure of the DTES community.
Join the picket.

Thanks to Homeless Dave, Fraser, Joe J, Joe L, Kim, Tami, Karen W, Paulo, Dave D, Harold, Brent, Rob, Tracy, Peter & more picketers than I know the names, & to residents passing by —- for sharing your poetic & needed thoughts about PiDGin and gentrification on the streets and on Facebook so generously.
More to come…..

Comments

  1. Laurent Munier says:

    This protest is bullshit.

    Instead of hating on the restaurant owners who are taking the risk and building a business here, what do you propose to do?

    Send a clear proposal of things to improve the neighbourhood (yes I live here) rather than bashing people who are actually making shit happen.

    This location has been dead and empty for years. Wendy and Ivan had all the time in the world to come up with a plan for the location. Now that someone is actually making moves, they don't like it because it "represents gentrification." GTFOH with that.

  2. Manu Varma says:

    Can these folk at the CCAP actually put their efforts to something productive…jesus! i guess they have never heard of trickel down economics….

  3. Manu Varma says:

    .. or maybe they should get into the PR business: Pidgin wil never have to advertise.. .lol

  4. Laurent Munier says:

    Manu – trickle down economics has been proven to be a crock.

    But you're right, hating on Pidgin isn't going to solve any homelessness or poverty or drug or mental health issues.

    Instead, they could put their efforts towards something productive like building businesses that create jobs in the local area instead of demanding that everyone else give them money for things like 5,000 new SRO units (equivalent to building 6 new Woodwards complexes.)

  5. You protests are having the opposite effect you want. You are losing support of the community and you are giving tremendous lift to the restaurant you are targeting. Stop bullying and do something constructive in your own neighbourhood.

  6. Page Turner says:

    They are vocal about the issue. They do not have the means or power to bully.Developers and City Hall DO! Oh so quietly and co operatively. I have watched for six years the development on and near my block at Powell and Carrall Streets. The RICH suburban blind drunk kids (of the even richer) climb in and out of limos, taxis and luxury cars screaming about nothing and refusing to leave the area, SEVEN nights a week from 12 – 4 am! No sleep to be had for min wage workers and seniors in small rooms a few feet above them. But, the profits keep rolling in.Soon our noisy rooms will be swallowed up too. And no job to be had, in my OWN neighbourhood, for this qualified beyond imagining, middle aged Vancouverite, restaurant /bar/retail employee of 20 years plus! I now take a two hour return bus ride to clean houses near UBC. Gastown residents turn me down EVEN for domestic work and hire imported slaves at min wage. Watcha doing/reporting about that?