In the Fall of 2015, we released the ‘Coming Soon’ Homeless Shelter Installation – a public education campaign to bring attention to the issue of homelessness.
The campaign features hidden video and audio footage of a community where a sign has been erected in front of a vacant storefront announcing that a new homeless shelter will be built in the location. Footage captures passerbys’ reactions to the news. A second sign, posted a day later, informs the community that a shelter won’t in fact be built, and calls for their support for long-term solutions to homelessness.
The intent of the campaign was not to prank a neighbourhood, but rather to get Canadians to feel something, react, and think about an issue that is so often overlooked. While we don’t want there to be a need to build shelters or other short-term, band-aid solutions, there continues to be a demand. We hope to bring attention to long-term solutions, and the right of every Canadian to have a safe place to call home.
The campaign was launched online just a week before the federal election on October 19, 2015, bringing attention to the issue of homelessness and housing among voters.