Letters: ‘Province abandoned them’ as Maple Ridge struggles

Our local government representatives should not be able to make a decision on our behalf, to have a centre built in a residential area

Editor, The News:

Homelessness describes the situation of an individual or family without stable, permanent, appropriate housing, or the immediate prospect, means and ability of acquiring it.

Homeless doesn’t mean dealing with mental health.

It doesn’t mean dealing with addiction.

We use the term homeless to encompass the people we see pushing shopping carts full of other peoples trash, addicts who care about nothing but their next fix, street people who choose that lifestyle, and people down on their luck who need, and want, to get back on their feet and need that support.

The province abandoned institutionalized people with mental health issues years ago.

Many of those now also have addiction issues.

Most of those are probably living on the streets.

Our local government representatives should not be able to make a decision on our behalf, to have a centre built in a residential area to house those our provincial government should be responsible to provide for in an institutional centre.

Building this ‘centre’ will not take the ‘homeless’ off the streets.

Statistics show a large percentage of people on the streets will not stay in shelters.

Don’t kid yourself if you think you will be looking after the existing street population in Maple Ridge by building this shelter.

It will become a regional centre for B.C. Housing.

If you think Maple Ridge has changed in the past 10 years, wait another 10.

Norm Krentz

Maple Ridge


‘Pretty convenient’

Editor, The News:

Regarding the dilemma causing much chaos in Maple Ridge of our so-called street people, it still should be, in my opinion, resolved as to who these people, are.

There are truly homeless who, through no fault of there own, simply cannot afford housing due to the high cost of rent, all fueled by greatly inflated real estate prices and a ridiculisously  low minimum wage.

These people require different needs than the mentally challenged, who are, for the most part, capable of living a relatively normal life with the proper medications and some guidance.

Then there are the addicts, who, in my opinion, are the greatest burden on society. They steal from us, they have no respect for themselves or others, they do not respect other people’s property, they discard there rigs every where, they openly buy and sell drugs.

These people are beyond help and I do not believe that the taxpayers should be providing them with housing anywhere unless they agree to attend a treatment program, and if not they should be excluded from the homeless and mentally challenged people. They do need help and are not deserving of it.

If mayor and council see to keep them all in the same barrel and close to the downtown, the old court house is close to the mayor and RCMP.

That’s pretty convenient for every one.

Barry Kazakoff

Maple Ridge


‘Bringing sense’

Editor, The News:

Re: ‘One for the other’ (mapleridgenews.com).

Thank you, Shelley Muntau, for bringing sense to the discussion on the homeless shelter, which is approaching mass hysteria.

As the writer stated: “So a start has to be made and, the fact is, that secure housing is the most identified top priority for assisting these people in breaking the cycle of addictions and poverty.”

B. Rolls

Maple Ridge


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