How do people really feel about the homeless?

A faux shelter is part of a video by Leo Burnett for Raising the Roof.

Earlier this month, a sign and public notice went up outside a vacant storefront on Bayview Avenue in Toronto’s upscale Leaside neighbourhood to let locals know that something called The Jefferson Homeless Shelter would be coming to the neighbourhood. Locals began to panic, calling a number on the notice to express their dissatisfaction with the idea of a shelter opening up so close to home.

Luckily for those who are “very tolerant” but don’t want people getting help at a place in their neighbourhood, the construction was part of a video by Leo Burnett Toronto for Raising the Roof. Reactions on the street and recreations of phone calls the organization received were used in a video released earlier this week. At the end, the sign for The Jefferson Homeless Shelter is taken down to reveal one saying, “You told us you don’t want a shelter here. Neither do we,” with a call to support Raising the Roof’s long-term initiatives to fight homelessness.

While some have claimed the video misrepresents the attitudes of those passing by, some locals clearly didn’t get the message and doubled down on their preconceived notions about the homeless. Maybe they need to be educated on the realities homeless people face.


Brand: Raising the Roof
Agency: Leo Burnett Toronto

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