One person dead after fire at homeless encampment near DVP

By Lucas Casaletto

One person has died following a fire at a homeless encampment near the Don Valley Parkway in North York.

A Toronto police spokesperson says officers were called just after 3 p.m. to Charles Sauriol Conservation Area, near Lawrence Avenue East and the DVP.

One person was pronounced dead at the scene.

According to the City of Toronto’s active fire incidents, crews dispatched six units at 3:10 p.m. to the area near Old Lawrence Avenue.

RELATED: Homeless, supporters charged in Toronto encampment clearings vow to fight charges

This past summer, the city’s encampment clearings led to protests and violent clashes between those advocating for the homeless and Toronto police, particularly at Lamport Stadium, Alexandra Park and Trinity Bellwoods Park.

Several people were arrested during the clearings.

The city carried out many evictions with a large complement of police officers and city staff that sparked intense criticism from advocates, including activist and author Desmond Cole.

In September 2021, the city revealed it spent almost $2 million removing homeless encampments from three parks — funds advocates say could have been better used to provide those experiencing homelessness with affordable housing.

With files from Dilshad Burman of CityNews

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