Abbotsford should have switched to recovery years ago. Housing needs to be in place to help those coming out of (addiction) treatment.
It isn’t the eight years of ASDAC (Abbotsford Social Development Advisory Committee) work disappearing into the void of city hall, mayor and council. It isn’t the two-plus years prior to ASDAC where the mayor and council “couldn’t do anything until they had a committee to advise them on social issues.” It isn’t the years prior to this when Abbotsford “didn’t have a homeless problem/issue.”
It is the lives wasted by mayors and councils who refused and ignored their responsibilities and duty of care due the citizens of Abbotsford.
It is not just the lives of those who have died or are dying or committed suicide or are incarcerated or incapacitated.
It is the lives of those who remain homeless, on the streets, using substances as a crutch to deal with life, mentally ill, capacity challenged, etc.
Abbotsford should have made the switch from recycling to recovery more than a decade ago. Today Abbotsford would have the housing, supports and services in place – or at least a solid foundation to build on – to provide what is needed on the journey to recovery and wellness.
We as a city, a province, a society, choose not to provide the help that we know will help our most vulnerable find recovery, wellness and reclaim their lives.
James W. Breckenridge