LETTER: Better way needed

I find it incredible how naive and short-sighted we are when it comes to dealing with the mentally ill...

I find it incredible how naive and short-sighted we are when it comes to dealing with the mentally ill and dejected members of our society.  Who would ever believe that more money is spent on every member of our homeless than the average productive tax-paying citizen earns every year.

The City of Vancouver spends $360 million per year on its homeless population. There are 436 registered homeless people in Vancouver. That works out to $761,000 per homeless person per year.

Not knowing what amount is spent in Abbotsford, I can only hope that it’s considerably less, but assume that it is probably astronomical as well. Wouldn’t it make more sense, and do more good, to actually take this problem seriously, and treat each and every one of them like they were a member of our own families?

Surely, we wouldn’t throw chicken manure on our own drug-addicted children’s campsites, if we had this incredible amount ($761,000/year per person) of resource to look after them properly.

Why don’t we make it illegal to live homeless within the boundaries of any city or municipality in the province? Then, if those who need help refused it, we could force it upon them for their own well-being.

For $360 million per year, there would be enough resources to fund the entire province, boost the low-income housing market and develop therapy programs for those who desperately need it.

To continue on this path of dejection and waste is nothing less than criminal, and those responsible for its continuance should be held accountable.

Art Green

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