June 14th, 2024

Council needs to provide services and options for the vulnerable in Lethbridge


By Lethbridge Herald on January 18, 2023.

Editor:

I was not surprised to read that mayor Hyggen, and councillors Dodic and Middleton-Hope had voted against funding Streets Alive to create 24-hour shelter. 

After all they haven’t been very empathetic to the needs of the homeless. However, I was shocked to read the interview with Mr. Kissick when he stated that the City had asked Streets Alive to set up a 24-hour shelter. You ask them to do your job but refuse to fund them, especially when most of the funding is federal?

 Last summer, the City started discussions about creating a sober shelter in the Civic Centre. Instead of continuing that plan, the homeless were driven out of the Civic Centre encampment and the sober shelter was put on hold.

Fortunately, Streets Alive have been there to care for the vulnerable for tens of years. It’s time for all of city council to step up to the plate and plan to provide a variety of services and housing options for this vulnerable part of our community. You have personnel with ideas, such as Robin James of Supportive Housing Planning, as a starting point.  Listen to them.

Frances Schultz

Lethbridge

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buckwheat

I presume the process went something like this. Administration dreamed this idea up, approached Streets,figured out how much money this initiative would need, 325,000.00 was the number. Then administration tossed it into councils lap for a decision on the funding. Result, they have “temporarily” suspended this due to the issues in around the front door and back alley, Streets, own statement. The question is has the 325k been also “temporary” suspended. One can dress all this up with all the compassion you like but the three who voted against it were correct. Wrong place. Thank goodness for warmer weather.

Last edited 1 year ago by buckwheat
JustObserving

Enviro. Canada forecasts a Polar Vortex currently hovering over Siberia to be headed our way for February. Temps. of -60C have been noted in it’s current locale. Perhaps ” Mother Earth” has concieved of her own solution to “homeless” wandering the streets at night.

biff

you sick sob

ewingbt

To clarify Frances, it was not for a shelter, but a warming center due to cold temps. The City asked them to do so according to the news reports and Streets Alive committed, stating they would have space for about 60 people.
They were overwhelmed with about 100, damage was done to their building and staff were abused . . . this is the norm dealing with these people who now demand they get things and expect the taxpayer to support them.
Stteets Alive doe great work and in this case, they did the best they could.
100 of these aggressive, lawless people who threaten anyone that questions them or looks at them wrong and people that have been conditioned to act this way by society’s condoning of their behaviours and police working with hands tied due to the failed judicial and penal systems. They have safe consumption sites in jails . . . how are the drugs getting into these ‘secure’ facilities?
Many look at the $325,000 which would have been over 3-4 months but don’t understand the costs of security alone. 100 people needs at least 6 guards but in this case there were only 2 guards 24/7.
Here are some costs for 2 guards for 90 days.
No one really understands that security alone is a high cost when you pay $27-$45 an hour per guard . . . depending on the type wanted, training and equipment . . . so if you had 2 guards 24/7 lets just say at $30 per hour (probably higher), the cost per day = $1,440 . . . now times that by 90 days for winter months (again low) and that is $ 129,600.
That only leaves $200,000 which goes fast when you pay staff, food and drinks that are supplied, and extra utilities and more importantly the repair costs from them using the building and toilets.
The washrooms at the Park N Ride are junk compared to when it opened because the hight costs of continually repairing them ended. Only essential fixtures are repaired now.
We are not dealing with a band of helpless, vulnerable people, but people hardened on the streets who assault and threaten police/fire-EMS/security and the public. They are rebellious and are not the truly homeless who for no cause of their own ended up on the streets in dire straits.
I support the work Streets Alive has done and is doing! They got a bad rep for no reason from many that didn’t understand just how big of an task it is to manage this group who are up all night commitiing crimes and getting high.

ewingbt

To add, the more housing we provide, the more people will come! This has been proven over and over again in communities across North America, Calgary, Edmonton, etc.
Several US states and now some Canadian cities have realized that they have only magnified the issues with their supports and programs and now are reverting back to law and order by outlawing encampments, sleeping on the streets and parks and loitering and involuntary treatment for those with mental health issues and chronic addiction issues that are killing them.
Many are on the streets because we heve enabled them and encouraged them with all the supports, as they slowly kill themselves and destroy countless others lives.
These groups that walk around downtown handing food right where they are standing or sitting are only allowing them to hand in the downtown area creating issues. If they want to eat then should go to a soup kitchen where they are fed better than many seniors and handicapped people in this city!

Dennis Bremner

https://lethccc.com/now.html
“Savin Lives not Livelihoods”

Last edited 1 year ago by Dennis Bremner
Citi Zen

Firstly, not the city’s jurisdiction, should go to the province or feds.
Secondly, the majority of these people don’t want our help. Let them be….. quit wasting my City tax dollars on enabling them.