Yearning for safer streets

The number of homeless people, drug addicts and prostitutes in the downtown is up

Re: Council looking to crime in core (The News, Aug. 29).

Whoever says that the number of homeless people, drug addicts and prostitutes in the downtown area hasn’t increased in the last few months is blind.

I walk everywhere and, yes, there are a few people I see on a consistent basis. But there are a lot of new faces.

I am constantly approached by people asking for money and have to walk by people strung out on god-knows-what drug, laid out on benches and the side of the road all over town.

I understand that some of these people need help, but there is a difference between helping people who want to get out of that lifestyle and those people who take advantage of the system, which is obvious that many are doing.

I don’t see how giving them free meals and a place to sleep is really helping them to turn their lives around. To me, it’s just enabling them to continue this lifestyle without repercussions.

Maple Ridge has progressively gotten worse as the months and years have gone by.

I was walking on Cliff Road the other day. The road runs behind the pool store on the corner of Lougheed Highway and 222nd Street, and what do I see? Three people sitting in the grass, in the open, smoking what appeared to be a crack pipe. Lovely.

I’m sure the families who live on that street want their children exposed to that sort of thing.

The best part about this was that you could walk from the Salvation Army to Cliff Ave. via the pool store parking lot. So I cut across to avoid these people, and there’s a cop car parked in the Salvation Army parking lot, facing where this drug use was taking place. I had half a mind to go find the officer, but as there were so many other people milling about, I didn’t want to draw attention to myself because the last thing I need is to be recognized as a snitch and jumped one night while walking downtown.

I watch drug deals go down all over town and I’m wondering, where is the RCMP? If I can spot these sorts of things, I’m sure that trained professionals can, as well. Are they not paid to uphold the law? Aren’t illicit drugs and prostitution illegal?

So what’s being done about it?

As far as I can see, nothing.

I don’t really see a police presence other than them driving up and down Dewdney Trunk Road and Lougheed Highway.  Of course, people aren’t going to be breaking the law on the side of major roads.

The RCMP needs to patrol neighborhoods, alleys and side streets to find and arrest these people and get them off the streets.

I’ve enjoyed the summer, but part of me is yearning for the cold weather to set in so that most of these people return to wherever they came from, so I can feel a little safer walking the streets of Maple Ridge.

L. Pellegrino

Maple Ridge

 

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

Just Posted

A small memorial to Rich Goulet was started at Pitt Meadows Secondary after his recent death. (Neil Corbett/The News)
LETTER: Rename Pitt Meadows school gym in coach’s honour

Rich Goulet was considered one of the provinces best basketball coaches and died recently

Doug Nolin, a Maple Ridge senior, snapped this picture of his pet pigeons taking flight down by the old Albion ferry dock. “What a beautiful land we live in,” he said. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Chirp, chirp: Ridge senior captures pigeons taking flight

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Pamela Franklin captured this picture of a raccoon in Maple Ridge, “chilling” in her backyard, on her storage bin. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Lounging in the spring sun

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Debbie Noseworthy snapped a sunset picture the first day of daylight savings as seen from the dikes off 216th Street in Maple Ridge. (Special to The News)
SHARE: Sky on fire over Maple Ridge dikes

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

Darlene Martin captured this ‘breathtaking’ view of a sunset and the Fraser River as taken from Osprey Village. (Special to The News)
SHARE: View from Osprey Village breathtaking

Send us your photo showing how you view Maple Ridge or Pitt Meadows, and it could be featured soon.

B.C. Health Minister Adrian Dix and Premier John Horgan describe vaccine rollout at the legislature, March 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
1,262 more COVID-19 infections in B.C. Friday, 9,574 active cases

Province’s mass vaccination reaches one million people

People walk past the Olympic rings in Whistler, B.C., Friday, May 15, 2020. Whistler which is a travel destination for tourists around the world is seeing the effects of travel bans due to COVID-19. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Adults living, working in Whistler, B.C., eligible for COVID-19 vaccine on Monday

The move comes as the province deals with a rush of COVID-19 and variant cases in the community

RCMP crest. (Black Press Media files)
UPDATE: RCMP investigating after child, 6, dies at motel in Duncan, B.C.

The BC Coroners Service is conducting its own investigation into the circumstances around the child’s death

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

RCMP display some of the fish seized from three suspects who pleaded guilty to violating the Fisheries Act in 2019, in this undated handout photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - RCMP
3 banned from fishing, holding licences after overfishing violations near Vancouver Island

Mounties seized the group’s 30-foot fishing vessel and all equipment on board at the time

B.C. Premier John Horgan responds to questions during a postelection news conference in Vancouver, on Sunday, October 25, 2020. British Columbia’s opposition Liberals and Greens acknowledge the COVID-19 pandemic has presented huge challenges for Horgan’s government, but they say Monday’s throne speech must outline a coherent plan for the province’s economic, health, social and environmental future. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Horgan’s NDP to bring in throne speech in B.C., Opposition wants coherent plan

Farnworth said the budget will include details of government investment in communities and infrastructure

FILE - An arena worker removes the net from the ice after the Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames NHL hockey game was postponed due to a positive COVID-19 test result, in Vancouver, British Columbia, in this Wednesday, March 31, 2021, file photo. As vaccinations ramp up past a pace of 3 million a day in the U.S, the NHL is in a tougher spot than the other three major North American professional sports leagues because seven of 31 teams are based on Canada. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP, File)
Vancouver Canucks scheduled to practice Sunday, resume games April 16 after COVID outbreak

Canucks outbreak delayed the team’s season by eight games

Most Read