October 16th, 2021

Tim Vanderbeek: Council candidate says city should focus on what it has

By Tim Kalinowski on September 14, 2021.

Herald photo by Tim Kalinowski - City council candidate Tim Vanderbeek says he would like to restore funding to parks and policing, and have council focus on maintaining and improving on what Lethbridge has rather than adding new projects.

LETHBRIDGE HERALDtkalinowski@lethbridgeherald.com

City council candidate Tim Vanderbeek says rather than the city investing in new green spaces and other recreational or cultural infrastructure it should focus on keeping and maintaining what it already has.
“One of the biggest things is (this council) did the cutbacks, and that has impacted on things like parks and streets,” he says. “And I believe what we need to do is keep what we already have and not pursue new projects to the degree past councils have.
“We have had people coming in to pull weeds (for the City), which I find disgraceful. Because they are paying taxes to have those things done.”
Vanderbeek is a lifelong northside resident who has sat on local Galt Museum and Sports Bid Committees in the past. He works as a substitute teacher in the community and for the City in the Parks department as a maintenance worker, (for which he is currently on leave). He has also represented the Alberta Teachers’ Association locally and at a provincial level in the past.
Vanderbeek says if elected he would see it as a priority to address the city’s ongoing social problems in a concerted and well-planned way.
“Medicine Hat has had successful housing,” he says, by way of example. “Finland has had successful housing. But it needs to be part of a co-ordinated plan. You need to have the housing, the treatment, and break that cycle. Unfortunately it’s a lightning issue, and people aren’t happy with harm reduction, but that genie is out of the bottle. Basically, she has crossed her arms and bopped her head, and she is not going back in. And we have to do things to mitigate that.
“Yes, people involved have rights, but they don’t have the right to impose chaos on the rest of the community they are living in. You have to look and balance those rights.”
Vanderbeek says he would like to see more dialogue between those who favour harm reduction and those who favour treatment to come up with common answers to the city’s drug crisis.
“We can’t have people dying in the streets, but right now we have two opposing groups that both want the same outcome,” he states. “But they have adopted their dogma … It is two pieces of the same puzzle. They need to realize neither of them are enemies, and they are working toward a common goal: to break the cycle and get people into a better living situation.”
Vanderbeek’s capital spending priority if elected would be to push along plans to create a third bridge if people vote for that as part of the non-binding ballot question this fall.
“Realistically, it’s not going to get built within the next 10 years,” he admits. “By the time we do the planning, and the environmental studies, and whatnot. You can start shopping around and start saving money for it.”
As a more immediate spending priority, Vanderbeek says he would seek to restore Parks funding and police funding cut in last year’s budget initiatives.
“When people are in trouble, they are not calling the social workers to come and deal with it,” he states. “The police are the ones that have to come in.”
If elected, Vanderbeek also promises to help restore a sense of respect and decorum on city council which has been lacking for the past four years, in his opinion.
“I do believe what we need to do is we bring back a lot of professionalism on council,” he confirms. “We need to stop and listen to what other individuals are saying and respect their views. I have been on committees where I have hated the person across the table, but they actually made good points. You have to keep that in mind.”
Vanderbeek says he loves Lethbridge, and wants to sit on council to create an even better city going forward.
“I understand what a great community it is, and I believe that I do have some things to offer,” he states. “And if they (the voters) would let me do that, I would try my best to do that.”

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Older School

Well stated “Yes, people involved have rights, but they don’t have the right to impose chaos on the rest of the community they are living in. You have to look and balance those rights.”
As it stands now there are organizations at work daily trying to install more and more services, and other organizations attempting to show the need for them by importing addicts from other cities. So unless you can stop that, then the comment is dead. For as long as two specific organizations exist in this city, there will be tactics to create the need by flooding Lethbridge with other towns addicts. This is not hearsay it is a fact!
So you have one organization helping another by ensuring their demand for services is stressed. The stressed organization then asks to expand citing the new demand. If approval for expansion is given, soon after another demand to expand will be requested because the objective of a few small organizations is to fullfill Spearman’s dream of Lethbridge becoming the Southern Alberta Rehab facility.

So Mr Vanderbeek how do you propose to stop this process when none of the “non-profits” involved have anything to do with the Residents and it would appear, really do not care what 97% of Residents want, why? Because the 3% involved have rights, and as far as the non-profits are concerned “they have the right to impose chaos on the rest of the community they are living in” because of their abuse of the word “marginalized”!
The Term Marginalized gives you the non profits the right, in this city, to “get even” with the people they believe caused the issue. Even though the people that caused the issue are their “clients” and chose drugs over society!
So do you collapse a city for less than 1% of the population? It can be easily demonstrated in physical geography how much of a downtown area is devastated when you cater to drugs and addictions vs if you do not. So really its a matter of mathematically deciding whether you just wish to destroy our entire downtown area or not. Why? Again, Mathematically you can see the immediate are of impact and then the secondary area of impact based on numbers of addicts attracted to this city. I have done the math and can tell you and your other wannabe Politicians that 3500 active users is all it will take to give up what we perceive to be our downtown. 3500 users distributed to Hotels to create “homes” or anywhere else around the city then allows the area of impact to double/triple with the same number of addicts. This is not rocket science you can easily look at impact areas in larger cities using Geographical impact zones vs the number of addicts then scale the size to a smaller city.
Here is the catch22 the non profits are trying to catch you and all the other political seekers in. They create their own demand by creating the services. If the services exceed another towns services there are non-profits that will shuttle addicts here “to give them a better life”. The more addicts shuttled, the more the supporting infrastructure for drugs and more dealers appear. The more drugs and dealers appear the more addicts appear. The more addicts appear the more the non-profits want to offer more services…. the more services offered, attract more addicts….need I say more?
You are in a war and do not even know it. Its not with Drugs and Drug Crime it is with the non-profits who have their own agenda and could care less what yours is, they have a mission with Christ and nothing will stop them!


One non profit has “helped the homeless” for 30 some years in the downtown under the guise of a christian mission, when in reality they’ve spent that time making money off of homelessness. It’s a lucrative business.

Another organization has a big building where they “help” the women in need, and most of their clients are Indigenous. That organization gets more funding from the feds if the clients are native, so they keep them there making the extra money. More or less farming Indigenous women without any intent on providing treatment, skills, or programming to help them get out of the situation.

This isn’t about “helping” anyone, this is about making money off of poverty. It’s a gravy train of government funding. The thing is some of these organizations don’t have any oversight as they are tax sheltered for being churches, or they have “trained professionals” who dot the i’s and cross the t’s on paper to keep the whole gravy train moving and legal.

One guy on the street I talked to has been a client for a housing first organization for the last 8 years. They keep him in their statistics, as a client, get the funding for him, but he remains homeless.

Then all of these organizations pat each other on the back for the “difference” they make, give out yearly awards, sop up all the funding they can, without actually getting anyone off the streets while in the meantime everyone blames the addicts for whatever problems come along. They killed downtown businesses? What about Walmart? Every downtown in every city lost businesses as soon as the Walmart moved in because they undercut with cheaper prices for everything you “need.”

Point being, EVERY organization from the most pious to “morally correct” that is is making money off of homelessness. They don’t want homelessness or drug activity to end because it’s a cash cow. They’re farmining indigenous people while they themselves get to go home to their cookie cutter house on the westside and feel so noble for the “good work” they do in the community.

Meanwhile, literally, people are dying in the streets. EVERY single person on council now (including Hyggen) had multiple chances to do something about this for YEARS, in Parker’s case DECADES. If you think Hyggen can or will do anything if elected mayor you’re a bloody fool. He’s interested in Hyggen. They could have reined in all these organizations and fixed this issue years ago, but they rely on the self reporting christian non profit “we are here to help” organizations that have no oversight or accountability.

Watch it happen. The gravy train will keep moving. The politicians will scapegoat. Not one person will be accountable in all of this from the users on up the system to the top, because it’s all corrupt AF.

So relax about it, and maybe instead of yelling about things that doesn’t do anything, demand people like Hyggen and Harder and all the other political shills to DO SOMETHING about it, rather than say “there’s plenty of services out there” because there aren’t. Those people on the streets do NOT get those services but the service providers sure do get paid for it.

Paid handosomely, ultimately, with our tax dollars.

It’s actually kind of funny to me.

Older School

The term non profit should be changed because it invokes volunteerism and working for nothing. Non Profits in Canada must ensure any and all monies are spent within a calendar year. So Ms Bourgue of SCS fame, ensured the books were zero’d by ensuring that she received $343,000 in compensation. If the following year there was $500K left over, well a pay rise would have occurred!
So if a “Non Profit” does good for a city and you donate money to it, you assume because its a Non Profit that almost if not all the donations go to the people they serve. Not true, some non profits pay their upper management millions per year. The rules for “Non Profits” are made to be exploited. They are responsible to no one and do not have to report whom they are paying and how much.
There is big money in Non Profits and big pay checks. Not all Non Profits work this way, some keep things in Check but many do not. So the larger the clientele they get, the more they can justify bigger pay checks. So it is to their advantage if they see an opportunity to exploit to do so. So if more addicts are needed in Lethbridge, there is another Non-Profit more than willing to share the wealth and shuttle people to justify an increase in services.

Last edited 1 month ago by Older School
pursuit diver

Wow . . . you started off good then you went to your usual uneducated comments that show off your base, as always, that the SCS was great for Lethbridge along with your LOPS tent. The reason people are dying on our streets is because of your illegal sites that enable the addicts to continue their addiction, with no counselling services and no cares where they end up once they leave.
Blaine Hyggen was on the front lines trying to get proper treatment programs in place with a better type of safe consumption site that didn’t make it a party palace that allowed pregnant women and underage people to use the site and offer actual counselling services instead of come back next week and we will see if we can refer you to counsellors, At one point Blaine Hyggen got one young person who demanded to go for treatment at the SCS and was told come back on Tuesday next week and we will see, then went to the ER crying for help, where Blaine Hyggen was there visiting a friend with medical conditions, and it was Blaine Hyggen that got him into treatment that night!
You really have no clue what you are talking about! It is so sad that you are so ill informed and that you attack someone that stood up for downtown business, getting more treatment set up for addicts and long term plans and actually listening to citizens concerns!
It is time that the illegal sites are charged with manslaughter! After the SCS closed we saw a decrease in fatal overdoses until the illegal sites opened up. Look in the mirror Uncle Buck!

Last edited 1 month ago by pursuit diver
pursuit diver

Sorry Tim, but we don’t need a failure called harm reduction in our city! Do some research of the Vancouver DTES and the complete failure that has spread across the province after metastasizing to Vancouver.
How deep are your pockets? Or should I say the taxpayers! Billions have been blown in an area with less than 20,000 people on over 300 social and housing programs, costing over $360 million per year AND the numbers of addicts, fatal overdoses, homeless and crime all have rose annually for 18 years! Harm reduction does not work and no one has ever been able to achieve all 4 pillars!

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