Teepees and Tents set up on city hall lawn (photos)

Protestors have pitched Teepee's and tents on city hall property, Sault Ste. Marie, October 28, 2021 (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)

On Monday, October 25th, Addictions and Mental Health Advocates, along with up to 100 other individuals lined up at City Hall to protest homelessness, mental health and addiction services in Sault Ste. Marie.

Four days later, two Teepee’s as well as multiple tents are now dotting the landscape in front the Ronald A. Irwin Civic Centre. The intention is to provide evidence daily that the issues in this City aren’t going away.

SaultOnline did speak with organizers and participants in the demonstration. They have informed us that they won’t be leaving until they have a resolution that is satisfactory for the challenges plaguing the Sault.

“We aren’t leaving.  All these people need places to stay,” said one of the organizers.

Signs in support of the protest are dotted all over the encampment (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)

One woman, who’s been homeless for sometime now, is happy to see it finally being addressed.

“This is an issue in Sault Ste. Marie. It needs to be front and centre.”

Participants in the camp have said they have heard from Mayor Provenzano on an almost daily basis about the ongoing crises they are facing.

Other city officials have also stopped by to talk about these problems that need addressing.

Supporters come and go throughout the day bringing supplies, food, and firewood.

Signs in support of the protest are dotted all over the encampment (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)

Organizers ask that if you would like to donate anything to the cause, to stop by and speak with them. Currently firewood is something which is needed and in short supply.

Each day, more and more homeless individuals have brought their shelters along with meagre belongings and have taken up a small space of land.

SaultOnline will be continuing to provide coverage of the protest and  will be working towards getting answers from all parties involved.

Thank you for choosing SaultOnline/ONNTV as your source of news in Sault Ste. Marie and surrounding area.

Signs in support of the protest are dotted all over the encampment (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)
Protestors have pitched Teepee’s and tents on city hall property, Sault Ste. Marie, October 28, 2021 (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)
Signs in support of the protest are dotted all over the encampment (Dan Gray/SaultOnline.com)


  1. I visited this morning and spoke with a few people. Some are really struggling, some there to help, a friendly environment, they all care about each other. One person I spoke with didn’t know about the 22 beds that are opening soon. I asked if she thought it was a good thing and she thought it was a good place to start. It would get people out of the cold at least. She put emphasis on needing a community type environment and pointed to the seniors building nearby and said similar idea to what they have. A place where people have things in common, where they can socialize, not feel alone, etc. which is what they have now being together but it’s getting cold. I met some beautiful people there!

    They’re starting to get a little low on firewood. Someone there told me that there is some in Desbarats (I think she said) but they have to find someone to pick it up and bring it to them.

    Should see something on ctv soon, I don’t know exactly when. I won’t be in the clip just to make that clear. Glad to see a bigger media source there…more exposure!

    • Yet another person who doesn’t understand much, if anything. I’ll help.
      We have things called elections where people run for office. The people who get the most votes in the election gain the seats of council.
      Make sure you vote. If you don’t vote don’t complain about those voted in to office.

  2. This tents business was rampant in Sudbury a while ago. If you drive around Sudbury in any directions, right now you don’t see any tents.
    Follow the money.

    • Public health, including but not limited to mental health and addictions, falls under the jurisdiction of the Municipality (AHU), Addictions-related crime falls under the jurisdiction of the Municipality (Police), Addictions-related, and Mental Health-related homelessness falls under the jurisdiction of the Municipality (DSSAB).

      The AHU, Police, and the DSSAB are all organizations that ONLY the Municipality funds, therefore Mental Health and Addictions IS a Municipal responsibility.

      Our Municipality just chooses not to spend our money on those Mental Health and Addictions responsibilities.

      Yes, our Mayor and Council have done some good things on the Mental Health and Addictions front like lobbying our MPP for an Addictions Treatment Centre, which the Province has finally committed about $350,000 towards. And our Mayor and Council put up a lovely memorial to those who died as a result of their addictions. May they rest in peace.

      But, as mentioned above, there is a whole heck of a lot more they can do, and spend, to help move toward a comprehensive, and ongoing solution to this crisis, and which is, BTW, in their jurisdiction… AHU, Police, DSSAB.

      All it takes is leadership, and political will.

      Mark Brown

      P.S. The Mayor could also declare a State of Emergency. That, in and of itself, would solve this crisis as immediately, and comprehensively, and enduringly as possible.

      • We’ll have to agree to disagree Luc.

        Unfortunately your pass the buck attitude does less than nothing to help these citizens of Sault Ste. Marie. It actually further stigmatizes these citizens by saying, “it’s not our responsibility, and we’re not even going to try to help using the tools our Mayor and Council have at their disposal”.

        Thanks for the ‘separation of powers’ lesson Luc. It doesn’t help at all.

        Mark Brown

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