In summer, the lakeside town of Kenora is an idyllic northern resort, filled with boaters and cottagers on their way to fishing vacations on Lake of the Woods. But away from the docks and the sailboats, the signs of crisis are mounting.

As homeless people trudge down the streets of this Northwestern Ontario town, the fences and doors are posted with “No Loitering” signs. Tonnes of crushed rocks have been dumped into public spaces to discourage drug users from congregating. And local officials have now ordered a temporary shutdown of a homeless shelter – provoking sharp criticism from the Ontario Human Rights Commission (OHRC).