I have read many reports and letters about the attempts made by the provincial government to find a location for a remand centre/prison. To the government’s search were only negative reactions by people complaining that they do not want such a facility in or near their community. It appears the core reason or reasons people focus on is the effect such a facility will have against them and their lifestyle.
Well, allow me to present to you another facet of the “consequences” of denying the needed facility.
Crime has gone up and down, statistics can be argued either way, but the reality is that offenders are becoming more bold and less concerned of who they hurt or who they drag down to their depths of misery and self-destruction. Defiance of authority has grown over the last decade and by experience, this trend will not subside.
The interesting contradiction is that the public will scream at the police and courts when an offender is not imprisoned, saying something like, “There is no justice!”
The current local prisons are full to capacity and these bold offenders, which keep coming, require confinement if the public expects protection.
If the province cannot obtain a location that is of a reasonable distance between Penticton and Kamloops, to tend to the “criminal population” that exists and keeps growing, what do you think will occur?
Do your desires for justice and a safe community include the reality of where these offenders will go if the courts cannot have the room to incarcerate them? Hence the consequence.
They will go right back into the community and I assure you that if these bold offenders are given the idea that they can do as they please and not end up in jail to await their trial or not end up in jail to serve their sentence, they will certainly show their appreciation by making more victims and dragging more teens, your daughters and sons, into the drug world.
The prison in Kamloops is stuffed beyond its capacity. Local jails are obviously not designed to be prisons or remand centres because they constantly deal with incoming arrests and serve as weekend prisons for people sentenced to serve weekends.
What effect do you expect will occur upon the decision making by judges when housing becomes impossible to manage because there is no more room?
Certainly, prisons do not stop crime, but that is of no point here. The point is the consequence of choosing to reject the building of a needed prison and remand centre.
We cannot deny that crime will live on, but we also cannot deny our responsibility to deal with the crime and the criminals who pay no mind to our rights to be safe and free from harm or infringement. The only measure for these bold and careless people is incarceration and the police and courts need the room.
The affect of a local prison/remand centre can be administrated and controlled, but there is no other control against hardened offenders than arrest and detention.
The province and the cities in the Okanagan need this prison and remand centre. I hope that these communities pay a better mind to help the province find a good place to build it instead of smacking the government with placards and volley cries.
This because of the consequence, if you smack the government about the building of the needed prison and remand centre instead of helping the government find a location, you will find that these communities will be smacked by more repeat offenders because there will be no place to hold them.