Drug activity and carelessly discarded needles are an issue in many areas of Vernon, including Linear Park and behind People Place. (Morning Star file photo)

LETTER: Homelessness in Vernon

Resident suggests relocating the homeless and drug addicted and putting them in mandatory treatment

Things in Vernon have gone from bad to worse regarding the homeless population.

It has skyrocketed in the past few years. Polson Park used to be a place I loved to take my kids to but now I wouldn’t even think about going there.

The last time we went there, my kids witnessed a homeless man urinate in front of them. Polson strip mall has become a junkie hang out and I am concerned for the young employees working at the stores. I have witnessed junkies snorting coke on the pillar at the pet store by Staples in the middle of the day.

It is about time something is done about this. We are at the point now where kids are no longer safe no matter where we go. Every stream is littered with trash, every playground scattered with used needles. Obviously, the safe shoot-up centers are not doing what they are supposed to.

READ MORE: Homelessness, open drug use continue to plague downtown Vernon

Perhaps it is time we utilize funds for people who want the help. Perhaps instead of giving illegal drugs to the junkies, we use that money to give insulin to diabetics, provide more teachers for the schools, clean up the parks, or provide more nurses for the hospitals? Why do we give the drugs which are the issue to a junkie to keep them high and mask the issue instead of giving life saving medication to honest, hard working individuals who have a treatable disease? We are putting a Band-Aid on the problem instead of solving it.

People cannot be helped if they do not want the help. There are kids with juvenile diabetes whose parents are paying upwards of $2,000 a month for medication, on top of what is covered by medical, for their children to be able to function.

It is time for change and time for action. Instead of harboring the homeless and drug addicted to our nice parks and walkways because it is easier for the police to manage, why not invest in correcting the issue so there is less to manage.

Why don’t we relocate the homeless and drug addicted and put them in to mandatory treatment, or something along those lines?

Clean up our town so we can use the commodities that we pay for with our taxes.

Matthew McInnes

READ MORE: Vernon man retrieves stolen wheels from homeless camp


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