The slow and acrimonious death of the TCAH was an indication that homeless advocates were without unified ideological and strategic direction, a result of several factors including the more hostile political climate in which they were trying to organize and the urgent, and constantly shifting, dynamics of the homeless crisis.
(46) Toronto Coalition against Homelessness (TCAH), "Minutes of Coalition to Respond to Freezing Deaths of Homeless People This Winter," Central Neighbourhood House, 21 February 1996, CTA, fonds 335, series 1790, box 543936, folio 5, file 5.
(100) TCAH Steering Committee Meeting Notes, 13 January 1997, ibid., file 6.
(102) "Notes on General Meeting TCAH," 2 August 1996, ibid.; Katherine Scott, Funding Matters: The Impact of Canada's New Funding Regime on Nonprofit and Voluntary Organizations (Ottawa: Canadian Council of Social Development, 2003).
Those that were allowed, such as TCAH activist Cathy Crowe, were limited in what they could talk about (for example they couldn't mention housing - the so-called "h-word" of the inquest - welfare or welfare cuts).
When the five-member jury reported on July 30, it presented what TCAH called "a detailed set of practical and sensible recommendations that will go a long way to preventing homeless deaths." Among over nine pages of proposals, the jury called for:
Possible susceptibility to interference is just one reason that TCAH activist Michael Shapcott argues that coroners who are going to conduct inquests need legal training.