To the Editor,
Re: ‘We can’t revisit this’, April 7.
Nanaimo must move forward with its strategy to house the homeless.
Often used as a comparison by those opposed, Warmland House in Duncan has actually proven to be a boon to that community.
Recent positive comments about Warmlands, from a school principal, the chairwoman of the school board and the RCMP, should go a long way toward assuaging concerns in the hospital area.
Since being built Warmland House has actually alleviated problems that existed in the area prior and has become the beneficiary of school fundraising efforts, as well as reciprocating by taking some of the food grown at its community garden into the schools.
This can also be seen closer to home if one looks at the Balmoral site in Nanaimo. An area rife with many problems it has seen great improvement since the Canadian Mental Health Association decided to purchase the hotel and convert it to supportive housing.
The Balmoral also soon hopes to have a community garden in place for the benefit of the neighbourhood.
Supportive social housing works.
While it does not place a requirement on those entering to give up drugs and alcohol it has, through the ongoing supports available, seen many choose to move in that direction.
The added benefit is that while there are initial costs, these costs are eventually overshadowed by the savings, up to $18,000 per person per year, actually accrued by having the homeless housed.
Supportive social housing is a win-win for all.
Gordon W. Fuller