I am beyond disappointed in City Council’s recent decision to ban shopping carts in public places.
I am in fact, outright ashamed that this is coming from my city council.
Those shopping carts contain what little possessions these folks own, and it’s appallingly mean-spirited that you would deny them even that. I would remind you of a recent survey regarding the “shopping cart” problem in the downtown core whereby it was determined that some of the worst offenders of the shopping cart issue, were seniors taking the carts to carry their groceries home, so the question begs to be asked if our seniors will also be patrolled by the bylaw officers for their shopping cart transgressions once this ban is enacted?
I shake my head at Mr. Quiring’s inference that if we take the shopping carts away these folks they will then get into shelters and get the help they need. It is my understanding that the shelters are already at capacity so one wonders what shelters he thinks they are going to get into.
Further, his apparent belief that the shopping carts are the only thing standing in the way of folks accessing services is positively ludicrous and I also find it incredibly arrogant on Mr. Quiring’s part that he would assume to know what is valuable and of use to these individuals.
This small-minded, mean-spirited action on the part of City Council does absolutely nothing to address the root problem which is that these folks need somewhere to live and call home. In fact, I think that the application of this bylaw will create greater conflicts between the bylaw officers and the homeless.
The money would be better spent on developing low-income housing than in beefing up bylaw officer and RCMP time to keep on top of the shopping cart transgressors.
This was a very bad decision that I feel reflects badly on both City Council and the city of Vernon. I would hope to live in a more compassionate community that can come up with less draconian measures to deal with issues. I strongly urge City Council to reverse this wrong-minded decision and would hope that others will do so also.