February 18th, 2019

Lethbridge should follow Hat’s example

By Letter to the Editor on September 13, 2018.

Last week I spent a day in Medicine Hat. What I discovered was a vibrant and clean downtown. What I didn’t see were people passed out, taking drugs, or any human waste. I also didn’t see anyone asking for money or food.

I saw countless agencies offering help to those in need. Not handouts, but help in the form of housing solutions, life skill and job training, resume assistance, job placement and addictions counselling and support.

When I got home I looked into this. Medicine Hat made a commitment a few years ago to eradicate homelessness. It seemed to be an almost impossible task but they did it and have maintained this status for years.

The situation in Lethbridge with the injection site has brought out into the public a problem that has existed here for a long time. I no longer enjoy going downtown and have had friends forced to relocate their business away from downtown because they don’t feel safe.

The solution to this problem must address more than the problem of the injection site. Most addicts don’t choose to become addicts, it starts with other issues and they turn to drugs to escape the sad reality of their situation.

To address the problems there has to be a network of easily accessible agencies offering help for individuals so they have a chance at recovery. I am not suggesting handouts for these people. However, they need to have support to help them get off the streets and rehabilitate.

Cities in the States have offered homeless people jobs working for the City itself. Individuals are paid $10 per hour and given housing and meals in the program. They have been successful and the large majority of participants get job training and move on to successful lives.

The cost of these programs is less than what we are facing. When we are now having the police suggest we have volunteers in the community patrolling to keep our streets safe we have tipped the scale of what is reasonable.

Let’s get to the root of the problems and stop offering poison to people who are already disadvantaged. I would invite Mayor Spearman and our city council to meet with the Medicine Hat mayor and council. They have cleaned up their city and it is working.

Hats off to the Hat.

Beverly Waters


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43 Responses to “Lethbridge should follow Hat’s example”

  1. Dennis Bremner says:

    Beverly the difference between “the hat” and Lethbridge is we cater to the Blood Reserves total indifference to their own people. Yes, their are Indigenous groups in Lethbridge working with the more than 90% Indigenous addicts we now cater too, but generally the First Nations Leadership are too busy chasing land claims and living in the past, too bother! I have never heard a comment out of Chief Bellgarde on what the rest of us are being told is a crisis of epic proportions.

    When you google Bellgarde in regards to Opioid you find the last meaningful comment on the topic on record on the net to call for the Boychild and Canada to solve their problem, this was 2016, so far the boychild in Ottawa does nothing and outlying communities of the Reserves now have to deal with their problem. You will note that Bellegarde calls on Canada to solve his nations problem offering no solution from his office! I quote :

    AFN National Chief Perry Bellegarde states “First Nations have waited far too long for adequate healthcare and mental wellness supports. There is a clear connection between the social determinants of health and substance use. If Canada is serious about fostering a better future for First Nations families, then we need to work together to achieve transformational change to healthcare, led by First Nations, and supported by all parties.”

    AFN Ontario Regional Chief Day will present a detailed submission to Health Canada’s Opioid Conference and Summit being held this week in Ottawa to set out First Nations priorities to address the crisis.

    Chief Day says, “Lives will remain in jeopardy until Canada commits to reducing opioid use among First Nations. We urgently need community-based, culturally-specific prescription drug abuse treatment programs. We want meaningful engagement to secure an open dialogue and logical solutions between healthcare providers and First Nations communities. Only when these vital pieces are in place will First Nations begin to see a reduction in opioid use.”


    So the boychild does nothing other than target BC for PR purposes and the NDP throw Loonies at the problem. The results? Lethbridge addicts who arrived in droves from outlier communities, because we do not prosecute for public use, has grown from 250 in September last year to close to 1000 now. With a never ending supply of youth from the Blood Reserve who seems to be successfully ignoring the issue by booting them off the reserve as soon as they are a problem!

    Has anyone with any “real money” come up with a plan? I see none from all levels of government the most arrogant of which is the NDP’s non-plan, “which could be a plan, but alas it would be a plan if we were re-elected, …..but if not then its not our fault “plan”, ……even though we dog whistle crisis!! crisis!! continually….the plan is only a plan, the crisis is only a crisis ,if we were not in our 3rd year….but because we are, then “Loonies are us” will have to do ( hand out low flow shower heads here) , ……unless re-elected then watch, honest, the big money will come, the plan was always $1.20 first year $1.60 the second, $1.80 the third year and if re-elected then a $kazillion ….honest…….yessiree …. watch us take it real real serious once elected, “saving lives are us” is our motto as soon as were re-elected again, until then “Loonies are us”( and if anyone dares to mention this be as arrogant as possible saying things like “you are accusing us of not caring!! be as indignant as possible too drown out critics of the non-plan)
    Alas, if you Albertans could only be smart enough to re-elect us “man we would be good”( insert woman gay trans, bi, lesbian and whatever people call themselves who have no idea what gender they are so not to be accused of being insensitive) ……..Meanwhile Spearman and Council are watching the Con Job unfold and the destruction of our downtown.

    • UncleBuck says:

      First off, Arches knows of over 6000 active drug users in lethbridge, a vast majority being non native white canadian settler colonists.

      Secondly, Blood Tribe has a population of 14,000 People compared to the 150 or so chronic homeless People in the downtown core who use the services of the shelter. It is not 1000 People. A vast majority of crime committed in this city is committed by the said non native white settler canadians (see the mormon family who more or less killed their own child by giving the child natural herbs over professional medical treatment, and walking away with a slap on the wrist, not to mention the rampant physical, emotional, and sexual abuse within the mormon community that goes unreported.)

      Thirdly, Perry Bellegarde does not represent Blood Tribe or Blood Tribe’s interests. Blood Tribe as a nation has a 1:1 relationship with the crown, as they are party to Treaty 7, which the land shared by the Blackfoot Confederacy which YOU as a GUEST currently occupy and benefit off of via the genocide committed by the crown in order to secure canada as a resource extracting colony of the british.

      None of your taxpayer money goes to fund the reserve system in canada, the funding comes from 3 trillion taken by the crown held in the capital account in ottawa that is funded by resource revenues taken from the Indigenous Peoples, where a small percentage of that 3 trillion is used which comes up to around 36 billion to run the reserve system in canada. The reserve system intended to oppress and control the Indigenous population.

      You can’t expect a population that has survived genocide committed by non native white settler colonist canadians to be “healthy” to the standards of whatever it is that blood sucking capitalists think is “healthy” (where in reality, the system imposed upon the Indigenous population that is the resource extracting colony of canada is destroying the environment.)

      Sit down, and get a grip on reality before you push a non factual CONservative agenda.

      • lonestar says:

        We’ve always wondered what Canada would look like today if not one single white “guest” “colonizer ” “settler” had ever set foot on it.

        Uncle Buck would be very well informed to understand what the first things Indians coveted and ran off with, after they burned down the ranch, murdered or abducted the inhabitants, and ran off with the harnesses and livestock.

        We’ve often wondered if the “settler” and everything they represent remain so hated why Indians still insist on naming their children white mans names, use his stores, drugs, buy his cars & trucks, use his modern septic systems, his plastic clothes, gasoline, butter and coca cola………………. Tell us Uncle Buck!

        • UncleBuck says:

          It would do everyone well to stop using cars, trucks, septic systems (mayans had indoor plumbing long before europe while europeans were still dumping their effluence in the streets, spreading cholera, and not bathing for weeks on end), stop using gasoline, butter, and definitely stop drinking coca cola. The world would be a much better place if we abandoned capitalism and property as well.

          Stealing settler’s crap is nothing compared to genocide Lonestar. Nothing.

          • UncleBuck says:

            That being said Lonestar, you obviously believe that material gains are more important than Human life and dignity, which is a serious moral failing on your part.

          • lonestar says:

            We rest our case with history which cannot be repealed, ripped out of the ground, or burned (try Galt Museum as a start for further information on the subject) directing you to the study of the pillages, high thievery, massacres and complete depravations on the western Plains the Iron Confederacy and the Blackfoot Confederacy engaged in ending Oct 25, 1870, on the banks of the River running through Lethbridge. The outfall of that battle to the man, woman, child, dog & horse of the Cree Iron Confederacy today keeps them and their enemy at less than amicable peace with each other.

            This lingering hate,and division, shifted now to the wealthy white settler apologist, though seldom spoken (the lingering hate) of has not diminished much, among Natives. Some of which may account for hundreds of divisions now called “Nations” in this country.

            Cursory study of Canadian history from the early 1500’s to present proves beyond any doubt Indians then and now didn’t need white men to teach them how to hate fellow humans, or how to imaginatively cause great causality to each other.

            Would you agree, for a race unaware of the simple wheel at the time of colonization, the introduction of iron, guns and ammunition definitely sped the process of dispersion considerably.
            So what would Canada look like today if Europeans had never set foot on this land?

            • lowkey says:

              This is so problematic that I don’t know where to start. First of all, YES Indigenous people are full complex human beings just like white Europeans. Shocking that they had conflict, war and competition all before toxic colonialism. Are you faulting humans for being human? The difference between conflict pre 1500s and post, is that these nations had the life ways, social systems, language and culture that they could continue to practice and heal after a war/conflict. Post 1500’s it became a mission of the European to eliminate the inconvenience of the Native to their profitable expansion goals. Would you agree that any group of people would fight back in that situation? Obviously.

              As for adopting the firearms and technology of the White man….. People DID have the wheel in North America prior to Europeans. The Maya used them for children’s toys and grinding maize. There was no need for wheels other than that. They did not have large beasts of burden (why have a big heavy wheeled wagon without anything to pull it). But they did invent sleds and slings for dogs to pull and canoes and kayaks to navigate the rivers like highways. You are grossly ignorant to say “for race unaware of the simple wheel”. Get your head out of the European rear end and get educated.

              To say that “because there was bloody conflict in the past in North America justifies…” whatever white colonial guilt you have is so so wrong. Without Europeans Canada may have seen a different distribution of languages, possibly the rise/fall of another great complex nation like the Maya or Inca. But the people who suffered from conflict would still have their religion, their culture, their connections to their identity and homeland from which to heal their wounds.

              • lonestar says:

                White colonial guilt? What a horribly racist thing to say, trying to make a point on racism. How dumb!

                Yours lowkey, is the racist commentary full of complete and utter nonsense that history disproves if you care to get off the couch and research – especially your diatribe of the practice of healing after the murderous conflicts, which in most cases only left the quick and the fleet of foot alive to lick their wounds – no further comment.
                And one more thing, we’re not talking about Mayans here, we’re talking primarily about plains Indians. I suggest you look around you for reference if you do not wish to do the research, and learn the truth.

                • lowkey says:

                  Should people who reap the benefits of an oppressive colonialist power structure feel no guilt when they are confronted with the reality of their privilege? It would be shameful for those who have plenty, thanks to unequal power distribution, to NOT wrestle with guilt or regret for the way politics has cause people to suffer. I assumed it was a struggle that you face which has caused you to publicly spout such hateful incorrect rhetoric. I guess I was wrong, so it is just hate lonestar?

                  Humans have always been at war with each other. It is NOT a justification for colonization. I tried to point out that, prior to European invasion, after war people had their familiar life ways to fall back on. Life ways which no longer exist thanks to European efforts. That is a fact. That is well known to people who know how to read history critically, a skill it looks like you missed out on.

                  Indians? How about you update your lingo. Plains people had canoes, kayaks and dog travois, no need for a wheel. You should rethink your elitist condescending statement… “Would you agree, for a race unaware of the simple wheel at the time of colonization” …. It sounds like you are stuck a century behind the rest of us. It seems like you prefer to rank people and cultures based on your completely arbitrary hierarchy of technology.

      • Dennis Bremner says:

        Much like Native Leaders, you too are living in the past Uncle Buck! Believe it or not the 1000ish drug addicts in Lethbridge really don’t care that they are from Treaty 7 agreements, or from the First Nations all they want is help. So far, all you hear and see is total and complete silence from ALL Indigenous groups….with the exception of expanding land claims, they seem to have that down pat!!.

  2. Resolute says:

    Ouch! Sounds like that came from frustration and bad experience with our politicians. If this accurately portrays the Blood band’s actions, that is indefensible. Lethbridge is truly becoming an extreme example of enabling those who trample our laws and a police service unwilling or incapable of enforcing those laws. CPS chief Davis’ excuse that the judges do not support their efforts seems very weak.

  3. Seth Anthony says:


    Many have us have contacted Mr. Spearman with similar concerns and suggestions. However, Mr. Spearman has consistently ignored the concerns and suggestions (he often deletes any such posts on his Facebook page), or on the rare occasion he replies, his replies consist of vague statements, and he continually (and incorrectly) spouts that handing out needles is saving lives. His rose colored glasses are too opaque and narrow to see the big picture. The big picture is that fundamentally, Arches has attracted addicts from all over Southern Alberta (especially from the Blood reserve). Arches started as a means to reduce the incidences of HIV in the gay community. Arches has no ability, let alone desire, for addict rehabilitation. As it is now, Arches is further destroying addicts lives, our community, and is doing it on the backs of said addicts and taxpayers. The irony of Arches would be laughable if it wasn’t true.


    You nailed it again by stating facts that everyone knows, but are too be afraid to say lest they be incorrectly labeled as a racist.

    The fact is, around 95% of the people that use Arches, and 95% of the people that you see in our parks, downtown, etc, that are shooting up, harassing people, passed out, leaving needles on the ground, committing crimes, etc, are the indigenous people. This needs to be brought to the forefront and addressed.

    • Dennis Bremner says:

      At this point Seth its not an issue of looking for blame its finding out why its occurring and have a plan
      So far the following groups have no non-partisan plan
      1) NDP
      2) Lethbridge Council because the NDP is Loonie-ing them to death
      3) First Nations who insist on self government and immediately say Canada has to solve their problem. Then Bellegarde says “lets work together” which means in FN speak, you bring money, you build the infrastructure, you provide the trained staff, and “we” will complain its not enough!
      4) 2 years ago Blood Reserve Police(BRP) said they would stop every car on their land in order to stop drugs coming onto the reserve. When that worked all the drug addicts came to Lethbridge because our Police Force could not do what the BRP can do because we just have far too many ways to get drugs into Lethbridge. So I have no doubt the BRP are pleased with themselves, they got rid of their addicts and problem natives and dumped them on Lethbridge.

      Those that defend the ARCHES program and insist Downtown will be fine are thinking 15 minutes ahead, not 2 years ahead!

      We have a bunch of amateur goody two shoes trying to placate a community in crisis. NO ONE is saying out loud, what we all know, that is the Blood Reserve is a never ending source of disgruntled youth who will give these new drugs a try for something to do. So we are guaranteed to have a never ending supply of drug addicts until someone in FN actually stands up for their youth and does something……so far CRICKETS out of the self governing First Nations of Canada, and when they speak “its you do the work, you spend the money, and if it works we’ll take the credit and if it doesn’t we’ll crap on you for the job you are doing!
      Funny how after saying 50 years ago the white man would no longer govern what happens to their youth, its happening all over again!

    • Montreal13 says:

      What should be a big concern to all,regardless of which side of an issue you may be on, Alvin Sheir wrote a letter to the editor,on this topic, on Sept. 15th. It was in the hard copy but by accident or design has not showed up on this site. Another reason to always get the hard copy of the herald. This has happened a number of times. I don’t blame the Herald,if they had boarder financial support etc. ,they may not be so easily pushed around? Get a herald subscription to support free speech. It appears as though your city hall doesn’t.

  4. Montreal13 says:

    Back in the 2013 civic election , Martin Heavyhead( who was running for council) said at a forum that,”The city of Lethbridge does more for the in need indigenous that the Blood council does”. I believe it was the forum at the public library.
    Spearman does what the two local MLAs tell him to. If you have questions and disagree with his answers or make further inquiries,he just blocks you.
    A practice that Trump was taken to court for. Apparently, a judge decided you can’t use social media for political issues if you are an elected prep of the people(you know like democracies)and block people just because they disagree with you. Imagine that?
    A significant number of people last election left the mayor selection blank,and they just voted for councilors. I think between the 2 other choices for mayor the ballots came to about 6000. That was about half the votes ,Spearman got. Unusual for an incumbent mayor?

  5. biff says:

    amazing what one can learn all about a city in a few hours visit. what a field trip, and thanks for the report. while there is a lot that sucks about lethbridge, hard to imagine a place of such perfection is just a couple hours east of us. must have to do with their inherent whiteness?

  6. Andrew Koole says:

    The Herald should really police the outright racist and degenerative posts on this board.

    Failing that, there are a number of fallacies here: First, Medicine Hat is getting a Supervised Consumption Site, and a quick Google of “Medicine Hat opioid crisis” reveals they have a very large problem there as well. Red Deer is also opening a SCS.

    Second, opioids are cheap and readily available. That is why junkies break into cars for $3 here and $2 there. It doesn’t cost much to get a fix. That is the biggest reason for the rampant spread of this. Don’t leave stuff in your car. And don’t forget, ARCHES does not supply drugs. So obviously the drugs are here in the City and outlying areas.

    Third: It is beyond asinine to think Mayor Spearman, any city councilor or our MLAs would like to be dealing with this each day. Every day. No politician would wish this on themselves. This is a societal crisis bigger than local politics, bigger than provincial politics. Conservative run Manitoba and Saskatchewan also face this daily. Our local politicians are working hard, on any number of sides of this issue, to find ideas that will help our city.

    Personally, I think Health Canada and the Federal Government are going to have to direct a much firmer enforcement approach on how to stop the flow of these drugs across Canada. It will be very difficult. But you only ever hear Provincial and Municipal officials discussing the crisis, and it is so much bigger than a local or provincial issue. The Federal Government needs to lead a national response to this.

    Fourth: this crisis is about to get much worse: Opioids and Meth are now mixing. Winter is coming.

    Anyone who thinks the Mayor, Councilors, or MLAs, or Police and EMS officials aren’t extremely worried about it is deeply mistaken. They literally couldn’t be any more mistaken.

    • lonestar says:

      Really Mr. Koole; do you believe asking the government to consider a firmer enforcement
      approach “to stop the flow of drugs across Canada” is the panacea, bringing the drug “crisis” to a wonderful conclusion while putting thousands making a living off the industry on the unemployment line?

      My goodness, why didn’t anyone, including Mayor Spearman our elected body of part-time councillors, hundreds of unelected members of the City Managers union boys and girls, our Premier Ms Notely or our wonderfully brilliant Prime Minister Mr Trudeau or anyone else of high authority tn governance think of this?

      The order of Canada for you sir!

      • Andrew Koole says:

        I’m sure they have thought of it. Much of the problem is the industry -Provincial Health Ministers have asked pharmaceutical companies and the College (of physicians and surgeons) to curtail the use of opioids in prescriptions.

        Only 30% or so replied they would do so. The problem is still much larger than a local issue and shutting down ARCHES will just spread the problem around the City more like it was last winter when everyone was howling for the SCS. Those 34 overdoses in the last week of February were the indication that this was already rampant.

        ARCHES is there to save lives, not solve the other problems. We need the wraparound services like more treatment beds and that takes a bit of time to put in place.

        Simplistic solutions to this are not going to work.

        My point is, I’m sure our politicians have thought of it and even approached the Federal Government about it. But like on many issues the Federal Government is big, slow and deflects.

        • Seth Anthony says:

          Arches has attracted addicts from all over Southern Alberta (especially from the Blood reserve). Arches started as a means to reduce the incidences of HIV in the gay community. Arches has no ability, let alone desire, for addict rehabilitation. As it is now, Arches is further destroying addicts lives, our community, and is doing it on the backs of said addicts and taxpayers. The irony of Arches would be laughable if it wasn’t true. This notion of Arches and their “harm reduction” is ludicrous. Everyone with an iota of sense can see that Arches is actually “harm expansion”. That is easily proven both theoretically and empirically.

          People need to stop calling Arches a “safe injection site”. Much more accurate titles would be, “Addict enabling site”, “community destroying site”, “needle distribution site”, or “the drug club house”.

          Give addicts free needles to inject poison, revive them from death, call it “saving” lives, pat each other on the back, give them more needles, and constantly repeat. All the while the addict gets worse, and the community goes to hell.

          • Andrew Koole says:

            ARCHES runs a Supervised Consumption Site. ARCHES is only there to keep people alive. You miss the point: treatment is not their job. Do you get it yet?

            You have nothing to offer but moralizing and hating on addicts.

            • Dennis Bremner says:

              Just out of curiosity Andrew do you see ANY need for a deterrent or as I call it a “social agreement” for drug users so at least society can see a reason to co-exist? Or do you believe that harm reduction and “offering rehab” if the patient agrees is the only things necessary? Please do not use the drop term “death” because death is not a deterrent for these users. So how do you propose we co-exist with 1000 users in Lethbridge now and possibly 2000 by next winter? What I personally would like to know from you Andrew is letting 1000 users or more run around Lethbridge 24/7/365 totally drug induced the plan you see for Lethbridge downtown? I would like to hear your plan for where are they going to live this winter or do you believe in magic? ARCHES is more then keeping people alive, ARCHES is attracting users to our city, if you cannot admit that then you are in denial.

  7. Seth Anthony says:

    You need to read my post again, S L O W L Y.

    • phlushie says:

      Here is a thought for everyone contributing to this site. Taking this from a comment I once heard about listening to people. To learn people must listen to understand not to reply. I would suggest to all the participants to this blog that they should read to understand,not to reply. We are all being duped by ARCHES being a “harm reduction” philosophy it is more an “extend the misery site” with the hope that some will eventually get off the drugs. I understand the Vancouver site claims the got “one” person off drugs last year. That is some real headway in harm reduction, at that rate they should have everyone they have on drugs off in 2000 years. if they are still alive.

  8. Dennis Bremner says:

    phlushie, its a point I have tried to make for the last 6 months, but no one is listening! We are modelling the Vancouver model because that’s what the experts suggest. The NDP and Lethbridge council just blindly went for it “cuz they are experts! The Vancouver group are experts, experts in total failure!

  9. Seth Anthony says:

    But but but Plushie and Dennis….Arches do save some addicts lives from an overdose. So technically, they are indeed saving lives.

    What do you say to that?

    • phlushie says:

      It’s like 007, born to die again another day. Nothing progresses or changes from the complete hopelessness of their situation unless they, themsleves, wish to change and strive to do so. The circle never ends, it is like a circular definition, a real catch 22 that we are getting caught in.

    • Dennis Bremner says:

      I do believe they do save lives but they also attract addicts because in the fleeting moments when they are lucid they worry about there possible death. So they leave Claresholm and come to Lethbridge because, well, at least some one may try to save me! But, every thing we do in life has consequences, so for instance, the fear of losing your license prevents you from taking that extra beer. You slow down in school zones because if you donot the consequences could be a dead child or a large fine.
      Name one consequence to drug use in Lethbridge please? If there are no consequences what is your motivation to quit?

  10. Seth Anthony says:

    Just playing devil’s advocate here, as the main argument from Arche’s proponents is that they save lives, and we’ve established that they do indeed do that. When Johnny goes there to shoot up, then is revived, Arches can’t stop Johnny from overdosing again, and the cycle continues. As crazy as that cycle seems, it is true that if Arches wasn’t there, Johnny would have died. So again, how do you argue against that?

    It also seems to me that most probably don’t disagree with the concept of Arches, but rather are outraged that since the drug club house has opened, are city has been quickly becoming a cesspool of crime, debauchery, business loss, home property value loss, harassment, assaults, discarded bio hazards, etc, etc. In addition, I know of 2 kids and 1 adult that have been stabbed by a discarded needle. The kids will have to go numerous blood tests now. To be clear, these are just the cases that I know of via social media. I suspect that there are more incidences of such that were not reported on social media, or local news agencies.

    • phlushie says:

      My last visit to the ER I had to fill out what is called a green sheet. This sheet specified what action should be taken if I was brought in while unconcious to the ER. I had to specify whether or not to take extreme measures to save my life. This is mainly because of my age. Maybe some thing like this should be done for the drug addicts , if their lives are once saved, to specifiy that there will be no repeat saves. One strike and grow up or face the consequences. They do this for seniors, why not do it for people trying to kill themselves and then wanting to bail our. If you jump off the high level bridge, once your feet left the deck you cannot change your decision.

  11. Seth Anthony says:

    Even if the addict refuses treatment and continuously has to be revived, the point is, Arches is saving lives, and most of the public will be ok with that. It seems that the only legitimate argument against Arches, is the fallout they have created. Which is what I wrote previously:
    Most probably don’t disagree with the concept of Arches, but rather are outraged that since the drug club house has opened, are city has been quickly becoming a cesspool of crime, debauchery, business loss, home property value loss, harassment, assaults, discarded bio hazards, etc, etc. In addition, I know of 2 kids and 1 adult that have been stabbed by a discarded needle. The kids will have to go numerous blood tests now. To be clear, these are just the cases that I know of via social media. I suspect that there are more incidences of such that were not reported on social media, or local news agencies.

    Do you agree with the above paragraph?

    • phlushie says:

      Yes saving lives is noble and raises us above the animal level, but drug addiction should not be a career choice, as it seems to be supported by ARCHES. It is most unfortunate that most of society has to suffer due to some bad career choices made by addicts. We all work hard not to become a drag on society while they work hard to destroy society. They have to take some responsibility for their choices or society is going to have those choices made for them. How much time, energy and finances can we spending in leading a horse to water when it refuse to drink?? They should have to fill out a green sheet like we seniors have to after a life saving event to remove the responsibility of society to keep saving them. They have to save themselves.

  12. Seth Anthony says:

    I’ve been trying to get you guys to admit that the drug club house does save lives, and you guys keep saying, “yes, they save lives but…”. Thing is the “but” in your answers is IRRELEVANT. They save lives, PERIOD.

    Now lets get to the heart of matter and start telling the truth. The truth is, you guys and myself, couldn’t care less about the addicts that refuse help, leach off of society, and cause destruction to the community and innocent people. These type of people should be REMOVED from society, as they are threat to society.

    To sum up, the problem isn’t whether or not Arches saves some addicts lives. The problem is, their methods of harm reduction for addicts, is causing harm to the non-addicts.

    • phlushie says:

      Seth, I agree with you. What do you mean by removed from society? They cannot be incarcerated and we do not have an “Australia” to ship them to like the British used to do. A space walk comes to mind, or learn to “moon” walk. Or a permanent removal. So why was the life saved in the first place. If people don’t learn from bad choices, then so be it. The catch 22 solution. or James bond solution ‘Live to die another day”.

  13. Seth Anthony says:

    Theft, assaults, public intoxication, etc, are crimes, and should be dealt with accordingly, and not the typical slap on the wrist.

    We need a TRUE needle exchange, and needles should not leave the site. Yet, Arches gives out needles by the handful. NOTE: Arches supplies the shelter, and 2 other pharmacies downtown. All other pharmacies in Lethbridge refuse to give needles to junkies.

    But alas, with our slap on the wrist justice system, and our welcoming mat to junkies, there will be an ever increasing supply of junkies attracted to Lethbridge. It seems inevitable that public safety is only going to get much worse. Like I said, 2 children and 1 adult have already been stabbed by a needle, and that’s just the 3 I know of. It’s only a matter of time before a child gets HIV or HEP.

    Also, Arches gets their mandate from the provincial NDP government. So the only possible way I could see to get Arches to stop handing out needles that leave the site, or shut them down completely, is if the PC’s are elected in Alberta.

  14. wheatking5 says:

    I’ve spent time in both cities and MH is not immune to drug addicts and panhandlers. A safe injection site is being built there too. When in Lethbridge, it is at least 10:1 that I am approached by an indigenous person for money. All cities have their problems and things don’t look promising for the future.

  15. Seth Anthony says:

    Dennis and Plushie,

    It’s a fact that the injection house does save some addict’s lives, and it’s a fact that the injection site increases forms of harm to the community. So now the final question that I’ve been trying to get at is, “How much harm should the community tolerate (if any) to save that life?

    NOTE: By the word “harm”, I include, business loss, home property value loss, harassment, assaults, theft, and bio hazards in our parks, playgrounds, schools, etc.

  16. phlushie says:

    The harm in this case does not even consider the harm to society in general; just to the individual that endangers his/her/its own life. Maybe this is “mother natures” own process to achieve a balance in nature in what may soon be an overpopulation of earth. Man has always tried to over-control his destiny or environment and many times with detrimental effects. This seems to be what is happening now. Things would be more honest if the term “Harm Reduction” is not used but we called the process “Saving drug addicts lives”. Then there would be no deflection in the process of doing this.

    The only deflections will then be the socieo-econmic-psychological problems the drug addicts face and that is a real but “personal” problem that can only be changed by that person. In other words each person is responsible for the own life. At least as seniors we are allowed to make that decision to have our life end when we have life threatening circumstances. We do that with a signed green sleeve.

    Maybe the choice should be left to the addict, after one intervention. Nature does always seek a balance unless it is manipulated.

  17. Seth Anthony says:

    That’s right Phlushie, the bleeding hearts in this case have no regard to the harm on society. But, that doesn’t answer my question of:

    So now the final question that I’ve been trying to get at is, “How much harm should the community tolerate (if any) to save that life?

    • phlushie says:

      And why should the community sustain any harm at all? We are a forgiving society and do not know where to draw the line on helping those who refuse to help themselves. Any solution to this problem should reduce harm to everyone, otherwise it is not a solution. This is especially so if it is called “Harm Reduction”.

  18. Seth Anthony says:

    That’s exactly what I think as well.

  19. mel says:

    I agree with you Beverly!! And Dennis and others – stop blaming the reserve for the problems in Lethbridge!! I lived in Medicine Hat for over 10 years before coming to Lethbridge just over 2 years ago… Lethbridge is a dump compared to Medicine Hat – and it has absolutely nothing to do with the reserve!! Medicine Hat may be known as a retirement city but at the same time it is far safer and cleaner!! It also has a youthful and vibrant beat to it!! Coming to Lethbridge is like taking a step back into the Stone Age!! Medicine Hat is also a far more welcoming and friendly place!! My daughter has yet to be able to make one friend in this city… She hates it as do I!! Furthermore, I can actually say that some of those from the reserve are actually more courteous and pleasant than most of the other citizens in this city!! The panhandling and many of the junkies here are not from the reserve… This city is not an affordable city when taking wages and cost of living ratio as well as taxes into consideration… I’m sure this has contributed to the crime and problems within this city… Too many of the people born and raised here are stuck in an outdated mentality and are blind to seeing this city for what it is and the problems it’s created and does nothing about… I’d say it’s time for a city face lift… I don’t know the mayor here however, I know mayor Clugston in Medicine Hat is a great mayor that has done a lot for the city and its citizens… Lethbridge needs to revamp itself and move past the 1980’s… And stop blaming the reserve!! Having such a large reserve so close by has actually contributed to the economy of this city!! So stop blaming innocent people for the problems that the city of Lethbridge and its citizens are guilty of creating!!

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