Archive for August, 2008


August 27, 2008

August 27th -Fred will meet with Andrew Kendall of the Housing Impact Team on August 27th. Andrew will assess Fred’s needs for housing. Will keep you posted on what happens. Let’s hope that Fred gets housed as soon as possible.

Andrew Kendall spoke to Jo-Anne Poirier and she asked Andrew to send her a letter re the meeting between Fred and Andrew. Laurene Wagner informed Sue Clark-Wittenberg of this info. Laurene will keep Fred and Sue updated. Sue informed Laurene she will give OCH time to process all of this, but if it lags on too long without positive results in getting Fred his housing, the Fred Team will protest again at OCH until Fred is housed. Sue told Laurene that OCH broke the mediated agreement with Fred re his move to Regina and getting rid of his stuff by March 15th. Fred has been homeless for six months because of OCH.

September 3 – Fred and Sue Clark-Wittenberg will meet with Andrew Kendall. Will keep you posted as to what goes on at this meeting. Let’s hope that Fred gets housed soon! Fred and I met with Andrew. He is going to contact Jo-Anne Poirier CEO of Ottawa Housing.

September 5 – Fred bumped into Jo-Anne Poirier and she was going to meet with Andrew Kendall next week.

September 8th – I got an email from Jo-Anne Poirier which reads:

to sue clark <>
date Mon, Sep 8, 2008 at 7:25 AM
subject Re: Hello Jo-Anne
hide details 7:25 AM (4 hours ago)
Hello Sue, hope you had a nice weekend. When I ran into Fred, I advised him that we were meeting with Andrew Kendall this week to pursue options for support. We will keep you in the loop. Regards,

Jo-Anne Poirier
Chief Executive Officer
Chef de la direction
Phone: (613)-520-2271
Fax: (613)-731-6486

September 9, Tuesday – Andrew Kendall is supposed to meet with Jo-Anne Poirier.
September 11, Thuurday – Jo-Anne Poirier will call Sue at 1 p.m. Does she know about the sit-in, if she doesn’t – well Sue will let her know.
September 11, Thursday – Fred spoke to Andrew Kendall, Andrew will meet with Fred on Tuesday, September 16th.
September 11th, Thursday – Jo-Anne Poirier returns Sue’s call. Jo-Anne says that the media stories about her and the press release Sue does make Joanne feel like “Sue – it like you’re kicking me in the teeth” My husband overheard the phone call as I had it on speaker on. Jo-Anne says she is working with other community groups to try to help Fred. Jo-Anne told Sue she had contact with Canadian Mental Health Association that has the Housing Impact Team, Andrew Kenall is his worker there.
When I asked her if Ottawa Housing would reinstate him either to 1065 Ramsey or Regina Towers, she did not give me a definite answer. She said Andrew Kendall was very surprised in the press release that he suggested Regina Towers to Jo-Anne. I was at a meeting with Andrew and Fred and Fred insisted on being housed either places which are: 1065 Ramsey or at Regina Towers as was originally going to be his move. Fred agreed with what I said on the press release.
Jo-Anne then called Jane Scharf, Fred’s other advocate and she told Jo-Anne that she had plenty of time to look into Fred’s case and do something about it. Jane also told Jo-Anne that Fred is in a housing crisis.
Sue determines that Jo-Anne is passing the buck on trying to help Fred.
Sue says “Jo-Anne, pick up your socks and treat Fred fairly and give him back his housing now – reinstate him either at 1065 Ramsey Crescent or at Regina Towers now!
September 15th, Monday – Sit-in at Joanne Poirier’s office at 39 Auriga Drive in Ottawa from 10:30 a.m to 2:30 p.m. Let’s see what happens. This should be a very interesting day to say the least.
September 16th – Tuesday, Fred meets with Andrew Kendall at 10 a.m.
Let’s see what happens, will keep you posted!

Will keep you posted on any other further developments on Fred Timms case.

Enough is enough Ottawa Housing.



August 26, 2008



see for directions – off Dumaurier Ave which is off Pinecrest Rd





UPDATE – Fred’s meeting with OCH Monday, August 25th

August 26, 2008



Fred and some of his supporters showed up at the Ottawa Community Housing head office at 39 Auriga Drive in Ottawa on Monday, August 25th at 1 p.m.

In attendance were: Fred Timms, Sue Clark-Wittenberg; advocate, Jane Scharf; advocate, Steven Wittenberg; husband of Sue and one of Fred’s supporter, Ron another supporter, Liz another supporter and Amanda, Jane’s grand daughter.

The Ottawa Housing (OCH) had in attendance, CEO of Ottawa Housing; Jo-Anne Poirier, Denise Dupuy, West End Manager, Loreen Wagner; lawyer, and Steve Clay of the Caldwell office.

Jane brought up the long delays in getting Fred any real housing and that Fred has been in agreement with OCH to get his stuff out of his apartment before March l5th when he would be transferred to Regina Towers.

Fred said he was fed up of going from couch to couch to live and wanted to have stable housing, permanent housing and he should never have been evicted from 1065 Ramsey in the first place.

Sue Clark-Wittenberg brought up the issue that housing Fred was an urgent matter that needed to be dealt with as soon as possible.

Jane said that Fred had applied to the Housing Registry.

Jo-Anne brought up the housing resource called “Housing Impact Team” that deals with homeless people and tries to get them the accommodation they want and assesses their needs to suit them to the housing that would be most appropriate for them.

Jane told Jo-Anne she wanted this contact with Housing Impact Team to be expedited. Denise Dupuy called Andrew Kendall who works for the Team and he will speak to Fred Tuesday August 26th in the morning by phone.

The protest is still on for Fred on Tuesday, August 26 at 1065 Ramsey from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

That being said, Fred wants his housing soon and will talk to Andrew Kendall.

For info on the protest call Sue Clark-Wittenberg at 613-721-1833

Fred and his supporters will not stop fighting until Fred is housed. Fred will soon be on the street with nowhere to go. This blind man needs to be housed immediately. Fred has been homeless for over 5 months. No one should have to go through this.

Let’s hope the Housing Impact Team and with the help of Ottawa Housing give Fred a home to live in.

Housing is a right!

Thank you for your support

August 25, 2008

Thank you for all of your support. The support has come from the media and the public. Thank you to for posting our press releases. It is very much appreciated.

The more support Fred gets the sooner Fred will be housed and with your help we can do that!

Homelessness is a national disgrace

August 24, 2008

Commentary by Sue Clark-Wittenberg

Why are there so many people in Canada homeless like Fred Timms? The governments do not put enough money into affordable housing and the housing that is funded in many times is not administered the right way.

In Fred’s case the administrators at Ottawa Community Housing lacked a vision with pertaining to such problems as how to deal with hoarding issues and how to assist someone with those issues and support them rather than throwing them to the curb which has happened. Evicting Fred has given Fred more problems that he had when he was housed with Ottawa Housing i.e. nowhere to live, feeling of insecurity, more depression, anxiety, feelings of hopelessness at times.

Canada is wealthy country and yet we have homeless people dying on our city streets in the winter, the homeless shelters in the winter are often filled to capacity, and the governments in many cases turns a blind eye to the most vulnerable people in our society.

I was homeless in Ottawa and Toronto and lived in homeless shelters for a time. Shelters are only a band aid solution to peoples’ real need of having their own home.

Fred is very courageous to stand up to Ottawa Housing. He has been treated unfairly and he says he will fight as long as it takes. Way to go Fred! Fred has a strong spirit and he is angry at how he has been treated.

Fred is a gentleman and kind. After 5 months of being homeless, he has retained his dignity and self respect and his pride. Ottawa Housing could not take that away from him.

He is a very intelligent man and knows what he wants and can articulate that very well. I believe few people will ever forget Fred Timms’ name. He is warrior in his own right, one to be commended for surviving Ottawa’s Housing’s unethical and uncaring attitude towards him. He is a strong person with lots of fight left in him yet.

Don’t under estimate Fred, he says it the way it is and knows what to do to get his housing. It won’t be long until Fred is housed. You can bet on it!

A poem about homelessness

August 24, 2008

Man of The Street–A Poem About Homelessness

by anonymous

Did you see the man standing in the middle of the street?
The one with the sign.
It says “Will Work for Food”

I barely caught a glimpse if him as I drove right by.
I pass by him often, not really giving much thought.
Car after car passes by also.
I’m thankful for what little I’ve got.

Yet, I still do wonder about that man standing there.
Why day after day he looks motionless,
probably wondering if anyone will stop to care.
Then one day I noticed out of the corner of my eye.
A stranger threw some change at him,
Quarters, nickels and dimes.
Quickly he bent over to pick up the mess,
hastily picking up what he could, and leaving the rest.

He stood back up and stretched out his back.
He looked to the sky to see the clouds turning black.
A downpour soon followed, yet he didn’t leave his spot.
That day I again passed him being thankful for what little I’ve got.

He still stood there with his sign “Will Work for Food”
More cars drove by some making gestures that were awfully rude.
The water splashed upon him as the puddles around him grew deep.

His clothes were so soaked; his shoes were we as well right down to his feet.
Yet he still remained there, and when the sun came out,
He wiped off his sign, and he faced due south.
That was the time I left a parking lot, looking for an
alternate way out.

There he was standing there, his face was so sad.
Again, I was thankful for what little I had.
As I waited for my turn at the light up ahead,
somehow he caught my attention; it was a moment I wouldn’t forget.

For it wasn’t a man at all but a woman, her face was red.
I thought it was from the sun, then I looked closer then to myself I said,
“She’s crying. What has happened to this world?”
“Doesn’t anyone show compassion? This woman’s dignity has been totally unfurled!”
I decided to act, and I couldn’t let this go on.
I got her attention, because this whole thing was just so wrong.

I pulled off to the side, and she came slowly up to me.
She explained that she is a single mother of three
She just lost her job, and there’s no-one to help.
She hasn’t anyone really, just her kids and herself.
I asked where they are staying. She said they live in a shack.
It was an abandoned building on the north side of the tracks.

I told her it’s not safe to stay there. She said, “What should I do?”
“My kids are all hungry, and there’s no money for food.”
I convinced her to come and get a bite to eat.
I hoped I could help get her and her kids off the street.
I placed a few calls, and not too long after that
a woman from the local shelter met us at the restaurant.
and soon drove with the lady from the street to show her where the kids were at.

When I look at that corner now where the woman once stood,
I wonder who will be next holding a sign made of wood. (Maybe me?)
I never saw that woman again, and I hope she knows she taught me a lot.
And I am still thankful for what little I’ve got.

Call out for action!

August 24, 2008

Please help us get Fred back his housing. Say you want Fred housed immediately as he is homeless now for over 5 months. You can do this by contacting the following people. Thank you for your support.

A picture of Jo-Anne Poirier, CEO of Ottawa Community Housing

A picture of Jo-Anne Poirier, CEO of Ottawa Community Housing

Jo-Anne Poirier CEO of Ottawa Community Housing (OCH). OCH kicked him out of his housing.

Telephone: 613-520-2271 FAX: 613-731-6486 Email:

A picture of Jim Watson, Ontario Minister responsible for housing

A picture of Jim Watson, Ontario Minister responsible for housing

Jim Waton, MPP – Ontario Minister responsible for housing:

Ottawa Office:

Jim Watson, M.P.P.
Ottawa West-Nepean
2249 Carling Avenue
Suite 201
Ottawa, Ontario
K2B 7E9

Phone: (613) 721-8075
Fax: (613) 721-5756

Toronto Office:

Hon. Jim Watson, M.P.P.
Minister of Health Promotion
777 Bay Street
18th Floor
Toronto, Ontario
M7A 1S5

Phone: (416) 326-8500
Fax: (416) 326-8520

A picture of Dalton McGuinty

A picture of Dalton McGuinty

Main Legislative Building, Room 281,
Queen’s Park, Toronto, ON, M7A 1A1
Fax: 416- 325-3745

Write letters to the editors:

The Ottawa Sun:

The Ottawa Citizen:

Call into radio shows like Lowell Green on CFRA etc – see the CFRA website for the schedule of shows:

A picture of 1065 Ramsey Crescent where Fred used to live until he got kicked out of his housing unit

A picture of 1065 Ramsey Crescent where Fred used to live until he got kicked out of his housing unit

Contact Us

August 24, 2008

You can contact us by contacting Sue Clark-Wittenberg in Ottawa by:

Phone: 613-721-1833


by email:

Fred’s advocates

August 24, 2008

A picture of Sue Clark-Wittenberg with her husband Steven Wittenberg

A picture of Sue Clark-Wittenberg with her husband Steven Wittenberg

Sue Clark-Wittenberg

Sue Clark-Wittenberg who is a person with disabilities and who uses a wheelchair has been an antipoverty activist in Ottawa for over 20 years. Sue has lived in Ottawa Community Housing (OCH) for over 20 years now and lives on an Ontario Disability Support Pension (ODSP) from the Ontario Community and Social Services.   Sue was a former civilian secretary for the Department of National Defence. in Ottawa.  She is a also a mental health speaker. Sue can be reached either by email: or by telephone in Ottawa at 613-721-1833

Jane Scharf

A picture of Jane Scharf

A picture of Jane Scharf

Jane Scharf is a homlessness activist in Ottawa.  She ran for mayor in the last election in Ottawa. She has been an antipoverty activist for over 20 years in Ottawa.  Jane Scharf can be reached by email:   She has been fighting social injustices for over 20 years advocating for high profile cases.  Jane and Sue have worked together since 1988.


Fred needs a place to stay

August 23, 2008

Fred needs a safe and clean place to stay temporarily until he gets his permanent housing. Can anyone please help Fred? Please call Sue Clark-Wittenberg for more info: 613-721-1833

Fred also needs bus tickets, food, toiletries and clothes and transportation to get to meetings and visit housing units when they become available for him.