Graffiti washed away soon after found on planters. Photo by Caterina Amaral

Two small forms of protest have occurred out front of the Tim Hortons on Victoria Street since a Ryerson community member was displaced from the property last week.

The Downtown Yonge Business Improvement Area (BIA) installed planters in front of the restaurant on March 21, forcing a man named Jason, who had been using the space as a shelter for many years, to move.

“The short of if it [is that they’re] putting the planters in. They long of it, I don’t even wanna think about it,” Jason said.

Soon after the planters were installed, three posters were taped onto the pillars out front of the Tim Hortons, which read, “Somebody lived here,” “between these pillars,” and “we just threw him away.”

As of March 28, the posters disappeared and the planters were spray-painted with the words, “F–k your shrubs. Don’t harass the homeless Jason.” Goodbye Graffiti, a graffiti removal company, showed up to wash away the message later that day.

“This type of infrastructure is hostile architecture that’s extremely anti-homeless and classist,” said Sabrina Guvenc, a Ryerson master’s student studying environmental applied science and management.

Guvenc said that the planters are an obvious way to displace anyone who could use the space to sleep or seek shelter.

“You can no longer lay down in that area, you can no longer sit in that area.”

As for where he will live now, Jason said, “[I’ll] just put this stuff on my back.”

Caterina Amaral is a journalism student at Ryerson University and a reporter at the Ryersonian. She loves creating digital content, especially for beauty and fashion. You can spot her taking photos in Toronto's trendy and older neighbourhoods for inspiration.

One Comment to: Posters near planters gone, graffiti washed away

  1. Anon

    March 29th, 2018

    People are defending a homeless guy lol? That area is dangerous and everybody knows it. There are plenty of shelters he can go to, but chooses not to.


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