‘We’re not in Kansas anymore’

Does Mike Homen think that if we shut down the Salvation Army’s Caring Place that the homeless people will go just disappear?

Mike Homen with Mollie

Mike Homen with Mollie

Editor, The News:

Re: It’s sad all the way around (Letters, March 28).

Does Mike Homen think that if we shut down the Salvation Army’s Caring Place that the homeless people will go just disappear?

What a genius.

I bet if we get rid of drug and alcohol rehabilitation  facilities, then there would be no more addiction problems.

And if we get rid of jails and prisons, then crime would go away, as well.

Why didn’t we think of this a long time ago?

Click your ruby slippers together, Mr. Homen, because you are living in a dream.

You blame the homeless people and the Caring Place for property theft, so then the people responsible for this crime were apprehended and charged, and found to be a homeless person?

Or are you assuming?

There are many people who go to the Caring Place – and not all are homeless –  to utilize the resources offered. They get meals they might otherwise not be able to afford; they get help with addiction and mental health issues, as well as access to employment and housing resources. A large percentage of the people there are kind, caring, and respectful individuals, and deserve to be treated as such.

Ignorance and narrow-minded thinking is not a solution to any problem, and in fact may create more.

Give your head a shake, Mr. Homen, you’re not in Kansas anymore.

R. Murphy

Maple Ridge

 

Communication key

Editor, The News:

Re: It’s sad all the way around (Letters, March 28).

I sense the community is very frustrated, feeling unsafe, unheard, and disrespected about their concerns regarding what’s happening in their neighbourhood.

Looking at the other side, the Caring Place needs to feel appreciated, respected, and valued by the community for the service it provides.

The problem appears to be what  is the most effective way to help homeless people without infringing on the rights of the community?’

It sounds like a process needs to be put in place that satisfies all needs.  This would require involvement by all the interested parties:

• homeless;

• Caring Place;

• community;

• council;

• RCMP.

I also noted that part of the problem is people getting stuck into positions:

•the Caring Place has to go;

• homeless people  allowed to wreak havoc on a neighbourhood because they have nowhere else to live.

Positions only get people digging in further and nothing gets resolved.

Let’s get past the positions, separate the people from the emotions, and work together on the problem because it is a community problem that involves everyone.

The key is  communication, and listening to all sides of the story.

This could open possibilities for brainstorming ideas towards a solution that all parties can live with.

‘It’s sad all the way around’ – it doesn’t have to be.  It all starts with communication, and respectfully listening to all sides of the story.

Marie R. Robson

Maple Ridge