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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Other places are doing better in addressing social issues

We can only do so much to help people who are not willing to help themselves, suggests letter writer
To submit a letter to the editor, e-mail Include your first and last name or initials and a last name, and your city of residence. Letters will be edited.

To the editor,

Re: City’s new homelessness-focused agency about to launch, March 15.

We now will spend $2 million dollars over four years to study homelessness.

I just got back from a vacation to Indonesia, Australia and New Zealand. I did not see any tents, no begging and only one abandoned shopping cart. I walked throughout 15 cities and never once felt threatened or unsafe.

Back home to Nanaimo and concerned to get out of my car downtown, pestered by begging at traffic lights and tents.

There’s no time for studies. Take action and get homeless people off the streets. People who are willing to try to improve their life but are in hard times, help them. People with mental health problems, help them. People with drug problems, help them once and no more.

It’s time we help hard-working families and not help people who are not willing to help themselves.

Peter Robertson, Nanaimo

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LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Mental health care, addiction treatment crucial to combat homelessness

To the editor,

Recently we were very fortunate to tour Australia and New Zealand for three months.

During this time we visited many large cities and small towns, venturing in both the tourist and local areas.

It was an eye-opener to walk down sidewalks and not be confronted by people panhandling, laying in doorways, drugs being used openly and bus shelters that look like garbage dumps.

Buildings were not covered in graffiti, public toilets were plentiful and clean. Green spaces were used for their intended purpose, not fenced off for almost four years as is the case in downtown Nanaimo.

We live in downtown Nanaimo, and driving home on our return to Canada it was obvious that nothing in downtown Nanaimo has changed in our absence.

How much longer must the citizens of our downtown have to put up with this debacle?

A number of the council members’ election campaign platforms mentioned improving the downtown area and making it a safe place again. Why are we still waiting for action?

D. and A. Keeble, Nanaimo

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Pointing blame won’t bring real transformation

The views and opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are those of the writer and do not reflect the views of Black Press Media or the Nanaimo News Bulletin.

Letters policy: Letters should be no longer than 250 words and will be edited. Preference is given to letters expressing an opinion on issues of local relevance or responding to items published in the News Bulletin. Include your address (it won’t be published) and a first name or two initials, and a surname. Unsigned letters will not be published. Letters sent to the News Bulletin may also be published in the Ladysmith Chronicle.

Mail: Letters, Nanaimo News Bulletin, 777 Poplar St., Nanaimo, B.C. V9S 2H7

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