Group of Toronto homeless men and women go to court over park eviction order

Tent city

TORONTO - A Toronto court is set to hear arguments today from a group of homeless men and women living in tents who are pushing back against attempts by the city to remove them from parks.

The group, which includes activist organizations, wants an interim order to allow homeless people to continue living in the encampments until a constitutional challenge of a city bylaw is heard.

The central issue is a bylaw that bans living or camping in parks after midnight.

The city says the Charter of Rights and Freedoms does not entitle the group to live in parks.

It says it has worked very hard to make shelters safer during the pandemic and has found temporary or permanent homes for hundreds living in encampments.

Since the pandemic began, hundreds of people have fled shelters out of fear of contracting COVID-19 and have been living outside.