Let housing professionals do their job

I’m getting quite frustrated with the naysayers re: the supportive housing facility. Some of you just don’t make sense!

Sandy Woodhouse (Supportive housing is too close for comfort, Letters, April 26) says Berwick would not want their neighbours to be drug users “trying to reform.” Would they rather have neighbours who are drug users who aren’t trying to reform?

Larry Hall (Supportive housing will bring negative consequences, Letters, April 26) thinks it should be built near the Oceanside Health Centre. Right next to Trillium Lodge, a care facility? And next to an elementary school? How is that better?

Rob Wesson (Supportive housing will kill Parksville, Letters, April 26) is worried about our vulnerable seniors. There are vulnerable seniors in pretty much any place this could be built and there are likely many vulnerable seniors who will be in need of this supportive housing. I am a vulnerable senior and I believe I am more at risk on a crosswalk in town than I will be there.

Adam Fras (Supportive housing should offer community Q&A, Letters, April 26) worries that there is no requirement for people living in this building to seek treatment or mental health services. It is called supportive housing, not enforced treatment. According to the Mental Health Act a person cannot be treated without their permission unless they are at risk of harming themselves or others. Qualified personnel will support the individuals, who will already have been carefully screened in order to be a resident. I think we should just trust the professionals to do the jobs they have been trained for.

My biggest concern at this point is that those who are so against this project may end up judging the residents and undermining the capability of the staff. And we haven’t even met them yet.

Jesse Jackson said, “The only time you should look down on a person is when you are helping them get up.”

Eleanor Thompson

Parksville

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