Four programs to curb homelessness, crime

Both provincial and federal governments need to become fully involved on this file.

Four programs to curb homelessness, crime

I tip my hat to all our local volunteers that have been working on the problems of homelessness and street crime — it is not easy. Our elected representatives from all levels of government have undertaken what can only be described as a minimal reactionary response. A more comprehensive plan is required since the problem in the Cowichan Valley continues to grow — locally and provincially.

If we can agree that leaving vulnerable people on the street is not a solution, I would suggest implementing four different community programs.

1. Those who are homeless due to affordability or availability should be offered immediate ongoing housing support. Could some units in mobile parks or apartment blocks be arranged as temporary options?

2. Addicted street people need more than a needle exchange program. They need to be removed from the street, the environment that perpetuates the drug lifestyle, and given healthcare and rehabilitation — this could take 24 months or longer working with doctors and trained professionals.

3. Neighbourhood criminals and drug dealers must be held accountable for their transgressions of the law. While incarcerated, repeat offenders should be required to complete comprehensive training programs so they can earn an opportunity to become active members of society.

4. Until provincial laws are updated, local RCMP must be given a mandate from our local councils to attack drug houses and shut them down without concern if they can gain a full conviction. We need every local drug dealer to understand that the Cowichan is Valley is closed for drug business and their illegal products will be quickly seized if they come here.

Both provincial and federal governments need to become fully involved on this file. Does it seem like our local MLAs and MP are either hiding or only organizing events to “educate the public” while local RCMP, local governments and our communities remain handcuffed? Dramatic change to the issue of homelessness and drug addiction is critical — we need a leadership plan — with tax money behind it.

Roger Bruce

Duncan

Letters

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lake Flashback: Weir opens, vandalism committee established, coroner’s inquest

1980: Youbou mill maintenance man’s death deemed an accident

Cowichan Lake community steps up to support food bank

Forest Cooperative pledges $4,000 a month, Virtual Bottle Drive launched

Cowichan Valley man dies in single-vehicle collision

First responders called to Miller Road shortly after midnight on Thursday

Cowichan Valley parks and trails remain open for health and wellbeing of residents

Cowichan governments agree essential to provide residents with opportunities to enjoy the outdoors

COVID-19 death toll reaches 50 in B.C., while daily case count steadies

B.C. records 34 new cases in the province, bringing total active confirmed cases to 462

List of cancelled Cowichan Valley community events

An ongoing list of events that have been cancelled in the Cowichan Valley due to COVID-19

B.C. unveils $5M for mental health supports during the COVID-19 pandemic

Will include virtual clinics and resources for British Columbians, including front-line workers

VIDEO: Community rallies around Campbell River fire victims

Emergency Social Services volunteers logged over 100 hours in first day after fire

B.C.’s COVID-19 rent supplement starts taking applications

$300 to $500 to landlords for April, May and June if eligible

Reality TV show about bodybuilders still filming in Okanagan, amid COVID-19

Five bodybuilders from across the country flew to Kelowna to move into a house for a reality TV show

B.C.’s top doctor details prescription for safe long weekend

Yes, it includes hosting an online cooking show

BC SPCA seeks help for abandoned German shepherd puppies

Donations have ‘petered out’ as doors are closed due to COVID-19

Most Read