A homeless man sleeps in a doorway in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, Monday, Dec.19, 2016. A new report calls on the federal government to not just think about opening the back door to help people out of homelessness, but to close the front door as well, to make sure they don’t become homeless in the first place. — THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

A homeless man sleeps in a doorway in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside, Monday, Dec.19, 2016. A new report calls on the federal government to not just think about opening the back door to help people out of homelessness, but to close the front door as well, to make sure they don’t become homeless in the first place. — THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward

B.C. kicks off poverty reduction meetings

Public sessions scheduled for Nanaimo, Port Alberni

British Columbians are invited to gather and discuss how poverty can be reduced in the province through a series of B.C. Poverty Reduction Strategy community meetings beginning Monday, the Ministry of Social Development and Poverty Reduction announced this week.

Ideas shared at the in-person community meetings will help inform the Poverty Reduction Strategy. The community meetings will run from the end of November to the end of March, starting with a kickoff meeting in Victoria Nov. 27.

Among the public meetings already scheduled are three more on Vancouver Island, in Nanaimo on Monday, Jan. 22, 2018; in Port Alberni Tuesday, Jan. 23; and in Campbell River Wednesday, Jan. 24.

More community meetings will be held throughout the province in the coming months, the ministry announced, with some times and locations still being finalized.

Nelson: Friday, Feb. 9

Meetings are being planned for Vancouver, North Vancouver/West Vancouver, Richmond, Surrey, Burnaby/New Westminster, Maple Ridge, Langley, Abbotsford, Chilliwack, and Fort St. John/Fort Nelson.

Information can be found online as details become available, at engage.gov.bc.ca/bcpovertyreduction.

There currently is no meeting confirmed in Parksville Qualicum Beach, but a toolkit is being developed for people who want to host their own meetings and it will be available on the website in a short time, the ministry announced.

— NEWS staff and Ministry of

Social Development release