County Report on Homelessness

The annual “Housing and Homelessness report” was presented today (June 5) at the Social Services Committee meeting. The report provides details on the number of people looking for affordable housing plus what the County is doing about that.  The report states that “the waitlist for social housing continues to be 10 years in some communities and has grown more than 300% in the last 10 years, with over 1,100 households on the waitlist. In 2023, the average vacancy rate in Northumberland was 1.3%. This vacancy rate is close to the 2023 provincial average of 1.7%.”  The report lists the new housing being built and lists buying 310 Division as an accomplishment but does not mention the encampment.  It’s as if the people at the County do not see it as their problem – but see their answers to questions raised at the meeting.

The meeting is normally attended by John Logel, Olena Hankivsky and Brian Ostrander but Mandy Martin and Lucas Cleveland also attended this session – although without a vote.  (More on County committees in County information page available in Resources).

There was a long discussion at the committee meeting but first, let’s look at the report.

Warden’s list of accomplishments in 2023

  • Provided 139 permanent rent supplements and housing allowances,
  • Moved 17 chronically homeless households into long-term housing,
  • Acquired 310 Division Street, Cobourg to modernize emergency shelter operations (Information at the meeting said that it would open late summer – August or early September)
  • In partnership with the Northumberland County Housing Corporation (NCHC), we also developed or acquired 47 units of affordable, supportive, and market rent housing
  • Advanced the Elgin Park Redevelopment, with the first 20 of 40 units now in operation.
  • Progressed with the 473 Ontario Street development
  • Purchased property on Westwood Drive to provide much needed land for future affordable housing. These developments are all in the Town of Cobourg, where the demand and waitlist for affordable housing is highest.
  • We housed 59 households off the Centralized Waitlist for rent-geared-to-income housing in 2023.

Key goals for 2024, including:

  • Create a Community Liaison Committee to support the emergency shelter.
  • Expansion and more focus on our outreach team supporting at-risk or homeless clients in all municipalities.
  • Continue to work with the Homelessness Leadership Table to enhance wrap around services.
  • Move forward with the renovations and retrofitting of 310 Division St to create a low barrier shelter system that will serve more of the community’s needs.
  • Continue pre-construction work, including net zero feasibility studies for the construction at 473 Ontario Street with project partners.
  • Continue working with member municipalities and other sources to develop a land bank of shovel-ready and funding-ready projects.
  • Ensure that NCHC assets are well maintained through a thorough capital repair program.

In his report to Council, Bill Smith, Homelessness Service Manager, also said that he is working with Cobourg’s business owners and Cobourg’s Police.  Expanding on the topic of where services are provided, he said that there are safety issues that have to be considered.

What’s missing

  • There is no mention of anything to do with the fact that 52 individuals would rather sleep in tents than go into our social service programs
  • There are no costs associated with any of the work done nor any budget overruns. There is no mention of the cost burden on Cobourg responding to emergencies at the encampment.
  • There is no way to know what is and isn’t working within the system because there is no information. There are no statistics on who has accepted help and moved out of the encampment.
  • There is no mention of Cobourg’s new by-law and how the County will respond to that (other than “Create a Community Liaison Committee to support the emergency shelter”).
  • There is no mention of any interaction with the Town of Cobourg nor with Infrastructure Ontario.
  • There is no mention of illegal activity associated with some of the homeless (although they are all guilty of trespassing).

But there were some leading questions by Lucas (with some by Olena Hankivsky)

  • Q.  Why does the report not once mention Encampments?
    A.  Services are provided wherever needed.
  • Q.  Why are costs not included?  E.g. cost of first 20 units at Elgin
    A.  Costs for each project are provided separately.
  • Q.  Are we expecting people to make appointments away from the camp?
    A.  They need to be in a safe location.  We’ll see people without an appointment (if they come to us).
  • Q. (by Olena) Is Transportation to a safe location provided?
    A.  We rely on community advocates – also sometimes Police help or we pay for a taxi.
  • Q. (by Olena).  Why does report not include any mention of 3D and other innovative construction?
    A.  We are familiar with these ideas and would expect innovative ideas in responses to RFPs.
  • Q.  Brookside is not safe for Fire and Police – why does report not mention Brookside safety problem?
    A.  (by CAO) Report is primarily for the Province – we are in separate ongoing communication with them. They are very well aware of the problems but we are not unique in the Province.
  • Q. (by Mandy)  When is council going to look at overall picture (not just Cobourg) and when are we going to look at Cobourg’s By-Law?
    A.  We are working with Cobourg and expect an “Agreement” at the next Council meeting.
  • Q. If the county can evict from its own property at 600 William, why can’t Province evict from Brookside?
  • Q.  Why does report not include what is working and what is not – there are no learning opportunities.
  • Comment by Lucas:  Tiny homes are referenced in the report (Appendix A. Para 1.8) – this shows that this level of Government is responsible for them.

Despite the glaring omissions, the report shows that the County seems to be doing a good job on housing those who do accept help.  The full report is available in Resources below.

Resources

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Rob
5 days ago

Our MPP said there are a number of potential buyers considering the Brookside property, I’m wondering what efforts the Town of Cobourg has made to be a part of the process to ensure the intentions of the buyer/developer align with the vision of our community. I say this now knowing how the purchase of and intended use for 310D is completely misaligned and frankly to the detriment of the community.

Dave
10 days ago

Downtown yesterday. There stretched out on a bench in the cenre of King sound asleep a person in need of a bath. Later strolling back they were finally awake, speed smoking like they had the heebe jeebes. No police foot patrols at all that I could see. Seems reasonable at any time to have this person be moved along. Tourist season has started. Cobourg “the feel good town”. What an encouragement for people to visit! What a sight for Cobourg residents to have to put up with!

Frenchy
Reply to  Dave
5 days ago

I fear “dynamic policing” has passed. Good for a headline or two, but passed.

Pete M
12 days ago

Sorry heres the link to the article for Dr Koivu of London in the national post.
https://nationalpost.com/opinion/dr-sharon-koivu-safe-supply-has-only-worsened-the-addiction-crisis-in-london-ont

Pete M
12 days ago

Interesting article where a London ON Dr. Who was in support of of “safe supply” of drugs has changed their opinion and says safe supply is contributing to an ever increasing drug problem and a health problem of spinal infections amongst the addicted.
She even talks about a person leaving their rental accommodation to live in an encampment to be closer to a cheaper supply of safe drugs. Sound familiar to what is going on in Cobourg.
.
Its time for our Health Dept, County and Town officials to realize this is a major community health and safety issue that will only worsen unless they take action to remove the protest encampment

Old Sailor
12 days ago

Like many of you, I live near the downtown. I went for a walk along King Street around 4:00 PM today. Walked by a young guy bunking in for the night in front of the Park Theatre. Sleeping bag and blankets all set. Some pretty rough looking pedestrians between Ontario St. and College Street. And the encampment residents haven’t yet been moved to 310 Division St. The downtown is going to be a nightmare if 310 is filled with addicts and drunks. That is the wrong location for them if the Town is to continue. Keep looking Northumberland Council.

Jennifer
13 days ago

I live near the encampment just north of it so to get anywhere I used to walk through Brookside. Now I rarely ever go for walks here because it’s awful. It’s really taken a huge toll on my mental health. I can’t believe it’s still there, and the whole situation feels so hopeless. How does everyone else deal?

Aleta
Reply to  Jennifer
13 days ago

Jennifer, I just wanted to comment that I really empathize with you and feel terrible that it is taking such a toll on you. I don’t live near the encampment so don’t know what it is really like or what is really happening in the east end–other than Pete Fisher no one is really telling us. I hope you feel better soon, and perhaps get support from your close neighbours. The residents of Cobourg somehow need to become empowered, as the campers have been empowered by the advocates.

Cobourg taxpayer
Reply to  Jennifer
13 days ago

I also live close to the squatters and can go no where without going directly past that mess. I go from anger to hopelessness. I have written so many emails and attended meetings yet no one does anything about this growing disgusting encampment. To be told by some who are aiding and abetting these crazed drug addicts that they are vulnerable and have to have everything provided for them including drugs is no community I want to live in.

Leslie
Reply to  Jennifer
13 days ago

I also live in very close proximity to the encampment. I mentioned below, my feeling hopeless. I also feel frustrated, fearful, sad, angry and I do not like feeling these emotions. They are also taking a toll on me.

I too have written letters, made phone calls and sent emails. It is disheartening to get responses that “it’s a sign of the times”, “happening everywhere” if you don’t like it “just move”. I feel disregarded, exhausted and often unsafe.

This is the town I grew up in, love and have invested in. I do not think anyone understands (or believes) what it is like, unless they live through it daily. Many outside of the area believe that what we go through, see and hear are “exaggerations”, “”misinformation”, “untruths” or “one-offs”.

How can this be addressed without acknowledging and speaking the Truth of the situation.

Thanks for sharing and take good care.

Last edited 13 days ago by Leslie
Sonya
Reply to  Leslie
13 days ago

afraid to speak out publicly about what’s happening to them.
All their homes have been broken into or repeated attempts to break in damaging doors ect.
How can they speak out publicly when these criminal drug addicts and the advocates will know where they live and who they are. There is a real fear there for them.
They don’t trust the drug addicts and they don’t trust the known supporters so for their own safety they stay quiet. They also have written letters and emails and made visits to different politicians.

Last edited 13 days ago by Sonya
Downtowner
Reply to  Sonya
13 days ago

This situation is deplorable and l know well what you folks are going through and share the hopelessness. I have a five going on six year story of the same feelings of hopelessness. Please, l hope, powers that be, come to their senses soon so that you “east enders” as well as our whole community may put this behind us. The protection of this crime of trespassing and the peripheral problems it’s created and the supporters needs to stop.

Dave
Reply to  Jennifer
12 days ago

It is a truly depressing and deplorable situation. Presently with it sitting festering and nothing done the only action I see people able to take is to beef up home security which include cameras, neighbourhood watch and private home security systems. Some as I suggested once before which was met with mixed reaction may want to invest in a large, protective dog such a a German Shepherd to alert should a prowler be attempting to break in or be on the property. My sympathies, my area is more plagued by dumpster divers and drug deals taking place in broad daylight as well as vehicle break ins.

Last edited 12 days ago by Dave
Rational
Reply to  Jennifer
12 days ago

It has to be tough living in proximity to Brookside.

I don’t understand why Leadership and Enforcement are not taking a clear stand to clean the Encampment out and listen to the law abiding residents of Cobourg. The conclusion drawn is that they do not want to – and are in support of the Encampment/310 D.

There have been enough danger signs that it is not a safe place, and IMO, this overrides any protection of “rights” the Campers have.

As another example, yesterday, Sunday afternoon at 4:00PM, I was driving east on King Street downtown. A police car with sirens and lights, travelling at a high speed, came up, and all cars pulled over. The Police car powered through red lights heading east. When I caught up it was at the Encampment, along with 3 other police cars.

Scottie
Reply to  Jennifer
12 days ago

Jennifer, your post just breaks my heart. I honestly don’t know what the answer is or what we residents can even do about it. Seems pretty hopeless until Brookside is sold and the new owners take action to clear out that dangerous eyesore. I, too, live in the east end but so far I haven’t felt threatened when out walking as we live some distance away. I most certainly wouldn’t be walking anywhere near that damn encampment, though! I hope that the situation is rectified soon.

Kevin
14 days ago

This morning I read an article about care homes. A comparison/contrast between care homes and jails was part of the article. This really stood out:
“Importantly, many care home residents have poured their lives into building this country, creating businesses, teaching children, raising families, and supporting churches and social service agencies. Prisoners, on the other hand, have taken more from society than they have contributed. This is why they are in jail.”
The article also mentions it can cost up to $100 a day for residents in a care home. How does this cost compare to Leslie’s list of costs for Peterborough’s sleeping cabins? The sleeping cabins are only a temporary, bridge, solution. Yes, I know prisoners are not exactly the same as the homeless drug addicts but both groups take more than they contribute.

Rational
14 days ago

iMO this item below is what the County and Leadership are encouraging with little regard for Cobourg.

Victoria Park – one of Cobourg’s “Flag Ship” attractions on a Saturday afternoon. Just posted by Pete Fisher.

Also, take a look at Mayor Cleveland’s facebook page (selfie video post yesterday) where he is points out how great Victoria Park looks with all the flowers planted.

Just doesn’t compute when you see this.

https://x.com/NT_pfisher/status/1799514575911403827?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Etweet

Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
15 days ago
Leslie
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
14 days ago

Linda, what do you mean by “we”? This is Cobourg Blog, not Port Hope. I would not want my grandmother living in that tin box.

Ken Strauss
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
14 days ago

Why do you possibly favour ANY tolerance for addicts and other criminals? At least Cobourg is not yet quite as bad as Peterborough.

Last edited 14 days ago by Ken Strauss
Sonya
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
14 days ago

When you say “we” I hope you mean Port Hope on your street and your taxes.

Leslie
Reply to  Sonya
14 days ago

Taxes?! Often questioning 310 costs, here is the Tin box costs:

Total construction costs: $2,447,788

Annual operating costs estimated @ $1,959,003 & include:

  • Bridge program administration & supports: $855,741
  • Security: $638,821
  • Property management: $48,850
  • Meal program: $177,253
  • Repairs, maintenance & waste disposal: $159,488
  • Rent on 210 Wolfe Street: $124,458
  • City operating costs: $150,000
  • Insurance: $28,367
  • Neighbourhood liaison : $16,026
Sonya
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

Sorry I put a thumbs down by mistake on your comment. All this money spent and they still have many encampments in Peterborough with evictions from the cabins for violence.

LivesinCobourg
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
12 days ago

These boxes would be for homeless people, not drug addicts. I would bet the number of true homeless individuals at Camp Cobourg is extremely small. Homeless people and drug addicts who do not want any rules and to contribute to society instead of just taking are two completely different things.

Lesley
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
11 days ago

Wonder what that place looks like now….I’m guessing a garbage dump. Nice whitewashing tho.
I dare you to post updatesd pictures.

Mervin
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
9 days ago

I wish you would finally get the point that most people want actual housing for those who are homeless. These tin shacks are not acceptable for human beings who are good neighbours and respectful human beings. Most on here just don’t want to be forced to accept the poor behaviour of drug abusing criminals and want people to have a modest amount of personal responsibility for their actions. Wake up please

Last edited 9 days ago by Mervin
Cathy
Reply to  Linda Mackenzie-Nicholas
8 days ago

Then you and the campers can move to Peterborough. It reminds me btw of a conversation we had. Why don’t you take them into your home or backyard Linda? Absolutely not. Why Linda? Because they’re addicts, straight from the enablers mouth.

Aleta
15 days ago

In addition to documenting everything that is happening in the vicinity of the encampment, I also think taxpayers within close proximity to the encampment should all file an appeal (Municipal Act Appeal) en masse. If enough people do this, it will surely get the attention of both the town and the municipality. And, it is completely justified considering the property values that may be declining. I live in the west end, but feel residents in the east end should be getting a property tax break at this point. Link for appealing https://tribunalsontario.ca/arb/filing-an-appeal/ If anyone has any ideas in regards to this, I would love to hear … is this a bad idea? has anyone tried this yet?

Sandpiper
Reply to  Aleta
15 days ago

Lets not FORGET those on Division st near 310 and walking distance around it .
The Drs finally gave up trying to sell their property immediately to the south after a nearly $200,000. price reduction and a few other business are about to close or relocate for the same reasons .
Its a very serious and Real Problem created by the County & the Town
thats being ignored and overlooked at the very expense of the citizens of that area .
Yes Compensation is Due Similar to the Original PORT HOPE
PROPERTY VALUE PROTECTION Program where Stigmatization and Proximity to a problem area were compensated for ..

Downtowner
Reply to  Sandpiper
15 days ago

Thank You, the whole town is suffering definitely in depth here downtown for over five years and now in depth near the encampment..all of our businesses, Churches, schools, seniors residences…on and on.The response keeps coming up that we all deserve full human rights. For clear thinking adults l agree,all rights unencumbered,but many among us need guidance and assistance to manoeuver through life . When that involvement involves responsibility and accountability crusaders feel restriction and denial of rights. I agree the road may be more difficult for some but because they have free assistance available to them ,which the larger margin of the population don’t use but fund through our taxes, this goes a long way to leveling opportunity to all amenities and services.Those of us more fortunate do not qualify to receive such free assistance but continue to pay for others and we cannot opt out of the taxation system…if we all stopped working where would our country be.? The majority of us are helping every day by working which funds all of the social services and thereby the less fortunate. We are doing our bit how about some of the takers do their’s and allow us to peacefully and safely go about our lives.

Leslie
Reply to  Downtowner
14 days ago

Downtowner,

You are right. Suffering. With Rights always comes Responsibilities. To illustrate, last night at 245am, awoken to 2 women heading to encampment. Threatening to kill one another. Screaming and yelling viciously. The one with a large stick screamed out what is your name? She screamed back Kayla Gibson. No responsibility to keep the peace, be respectful to your neighbours.

3 homes on market where I live, all up for sale — less than 100k from last summer. A few before that sold.

Last summer at the beach, there were 15 homeless. Now 50+. With the “Open House” sign down the road, therefore the Waterloo decision will still stand when 310 opens. Is this the objective, “welcoming” more to come? I think so. It is becoming unbearable to live here. What I see and hear, would make your skin crawl. Feeling hopeless.

Last edited 14 days ago by Leslie
Rational
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

Leslie – your comment further points to how unsafe the Encampment is and 310 D will be.

I Googled the person named – Cobourg and different articles displayed, dating back to 2020, where a person under the same name was charge with crime and illegal drug possessions.

There is also an article under the Art Gallery of Northumberland – March 2023 – where Greenwood Coalition sponsored an art show featuring Kayla Gibson, Chris Kneilands, Virginia Bailey (residents (?) of the Encampment) and others.

This madness has to be reined in – but those that can do something about it are not acknowledging the seriousness/danger of the Encampment. Why not?

And where are CPS during the night when the Encampment residents are out on the streets?

Sonya
Reply to  Rational
14 days ago

Yes, GWC supports thieves, continued drug use, criminals, wife beaters, public drug use, injection sites, government funded addictive opioid drugs. The list goes on and on. They pass these people off as being vulnerable while the rest of the town MUST suffer their abuse.
Nothing we can do about it. Sit here and take it.
Yes, it is depressing and people are losing hope. Jumping ship to safer towns. Get out now before it gets worse.

Leslie
Reply to  Rational
14 days ago

Not surprising at all. Madness, yes.

“The resulting powerful images are often used to advocate for social justice and positive change.”
Social Justice? Positive Change?

“…we found the piece, How Far Would You Go, to be a familiar but also provocative image…”
A provocative “piece” of artwork, not the Truth that it is Vandalism of our town and on display in Our Town Hall, by convicted criminals.


IMG_1589
Sonya
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

I saw this film myself. I left early. It’s so far from the truth. Just a coverup for what’s really going on.

Sandpiper
Reply to  Aleta
14 days ago

Lets Not Forget that these Public Service Workers at the County and the Town
also Get Paid by those same Tax Paying Citizens .
Now many are ReMote Workers if they are in fact working ????.
As everyone can see Productivity , Communications of all sorts even internally are not timely or checked , Responses to calls and service inquiries are now all by way of outdated Electronic info. Many of the names in different departments are not even employed there any more .
Obviously the People in Charge are not doing their Jobs . We need CEO, CAO s that
can make these department heads reasonable and perform
Just how far behind are we on other priorities The admitted to 10 years on Affordable housing
What Else Storm Water etc

MAL
16 days ago

See the Northumberland Community Legal Centre responds to Cobourg Mayor Lucas Cleveland’s “Year In Review” posted on its website on December 13 2024. It was too long to cut and paste here

MAL
Reply to  MAL
16 days ago

2023 – not a time traveller

Sonya
Reply to  MAL
16 days ago

I found the Northumberland community legal centre letter to be contradictory. They say there is no housing in Northumberland but yesterday they were bragging about housing they have found for so many people.
If this is true why do we have 60 people still living in the illegal encampment putting people in danger that live in that area. Putting the kids in the three schools surrounding the encampment in danger.
Could it be because the legal center supports the encampment being where it is as a protest for sleeping cabins?
Let’s not forget that we all have human rights. The most vulnerable citizens are our kids and seniors hands down.

LivesinCobourg
Reply to  Sonya
16 days ago

Kids and seniors are indeed the most vulnerable, contrary to what some people say. It makes me angry when the campers are referred to as the most vulnerable.

Sonya
Reply to  LivesinCobourg
16 days ago

Yes calling the campers the most vulnerable must of been started by ideologists who are not supported by any data or research.

Old Sailor
Reply to  MAL
15 days ago

MAL’s LInk

The encampment folks want to live their way under their rules on our dime.

https://thehelpandlegalcentre.ca/2023/12/14/nclc-responds-to-cobourg-mayor-lucas-clevelands-year-in-review/

Sonya
Reply to  Old Sailor
15 days ago

So the legal centre wants 310 division to open. in the middle of a residential/business/ elementary school area where some of our most vulnerable people live and work.
The legal centre needs to realize that drug addicts are not the most vulnerable people.
Their ideologies are getting in the way of common sense. Human rights are for everyone!!!!!
I think this is a huge conflict of interest.

Downtowner
Reply to  Sonya
15 days ago

Even when provided with housing these folks destroy or over occupy the residence,,…with no remorse .The damages and repairs are left for landlords and the County to fund. There are no landlords willing to rent because of the costs involved,..,who can blame them….and the work the County goes to to provide safe, affordable housing isnt appreciated…..because rent is expected on a continuous basis and even at an affordable rate isn’t what they want……free .

Dave
16 days ago

As I see it Cobourg is just one cog in the wheel of the County. The county has decided we are to get 310 D and they say to us smile and be happy it is decided and its attendant costs.
The homeless problem and high cost of rents everywhere is a larger problem and brings only gloom when I think about it. Rental housing, the common accommodation for people on the lower end has greatly dropped in building new units for many, many years. Population has quickly risen to increased high volume immigratiion of which the lastest promise by the Feds is they plan to bring in many, many more again without consideration to housing stock or other factors. Too few goods being chased by too many dollars.
As for the many encanpments and reasons for them we have all been able to provide our input previously – a crying shame!

Last edited 16 days ago by Dave
Dave
Reply to  Dave
15 days ago

I had hoped to see a little more interest on this subject, the heading is simply County Report on Homelessness. Most attetion seems directed to the encampment rather than homelessness. A prior comment was deleted which outlined what Canada’s average rental rate is now. In prior years rents were such that two lower paid workers could share a two bedroom at a cost of one week’s wages to each. Families starting out were generally in a better position, there was more money to raise a family in the rental prices.

Rentals have been greatly ignored. The stepping stone to home ownership. Condos have domnated the builds with fewer and fewer builds in the rental housing causing rental rates to escalate everywhere not just here in Cobourg.

The Encampment is another issue which the County has selected to ignore in its report but in the homelessness aspect very little has been done to ensure there is housing available at a reasonable rate which has disappeared over the years. Instead of subsidized housing only open to a select clientele group why not encourage the building of rental housing for everyone through financial incentive?

Last edited 15 days ago by Dave
Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
15 days ago

Our government actively discourages the construction of rental housing. Between rent control and a non-functioning Landlord and Tenant Board that takes months to evict a bad tenant, only an idiot would invest in a rental property.

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 days ago

Hi Ken –

Rent control came into effect in Ontario in 1975. It only applies to buildings built prior to 2018 so I don’t buy that – there was still plenty of apartment building construction. Bad Tenents? I have heard various stories on people trying to get rid of them but one thing keeps coming to mind is due dilligence when renting your premises. I have lived in places that bad tenants were quickly removed. I have lived in large buildings where bad tenants were extremely rare.
I just think it is easier to build a condo project or stand alone homes and make more money. The bottom line. Therefore governments need to recognize this and offer building incentives – cheaper then community housing projects, open to all incomes and part of what citizens need – a place to live and since condos a government responsibility to see there is housing stock so we don’t have shelters.

Last edited 15 days ago by Dave
Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
15 days ago

The rules for rent control have changed a number of times since 1975 and are likely to change in the future. A rental building has a life of decades so future changes will impact investment decisions made today.

There have been numerous news reports of it taking a year or more to evict a tenant who is not paying. No rent payments for a year seriously reduces the return on an investment!

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
15 days ago

Read all that Ken – how dilligent was the person doing the renting? You say a number of changes? i recall 3. One in rent control applied in 1975 – 2. a change to buildings it applied to – built from 2018 no rent control – 3. Used to be when a tenant moved out the landlord could only apply the allowed increase to that year to the new tenant. Today the sky is the limit. That is why apartments renting in 2013 for $950 here in Cobourg are now rening for $1950 to $2100 for a one bedroom in a building built in 1975 often with little upgrades.
Lastly Ken – would you prefer to pay to house people in shelters? Provide rent subsidies? Build extension community housing? Have people take up residence in parks, live in their cars? If there is no housing for people as the rental rates have become astronomical which also afffects the economy – have you noticed all the old junkers people are driving, cheap clothing and discount stores? Or keep raising the minimum wage which os only swallowed by people having to pay increased costs. What is your solution?

Last edited 15 days ago by Dave
Dave
Reply to  Dave
15 days ago

I’ld really hoped to hear your solution Ken or anyone else on the Blog as rental rates keep pricing people out. Should a place be sold also and they have to re-enter the market they don’t quality income wise even if they are strident budgeters they won’t be considered. For others there are no places they can afford and they don’t qualify for subsidized as it has a low income ceiling. We aren’t talking about the addicted here but the poor, often working poor and retiring poor, people on fixed incomes and seniors.

Last edited 15 days ago by Dave
Kevin
Reply to  Dave
15 days ago

Dave, you make some good points. Rental prices are, in part, the result of supply and demand. If rents are too high then one question is why is there so much demand? Part of the demand side could be immigration policy. The supply side of the problem could be, in part, there is more profit building condos, as you suggest.

Ken mentioned it can take over a year to get rid of bad tenants. It can happen faster, regardless, it is a risk for the landlord which drives up rental prices. Much like a few bad or impaired drivers drive up the cost of car insurance for everybody or a relatively small number of people committing crimes increases policing costs.

It is clear the county has a very long way to go to provide enough community housing to get the waiting lists down. But is that what we want? If it were a short wait for community housing would more people get on the list? Housing is important and a complicated problem to solve.

Dave, you asked Ken his preference for housing people. How about the people we are to house start being more responsible, working, and sharing apartments? This could be part of the solution to the complicated housing problem.

Dave
Reply to  Kevin
14 days ago

Hi Kevin –
My hope is there is more private rental housing built. Strange when it is the town the question is directed to there is great indignation from citizens here stating it is a County matter. Ken voices his protests and receives a goodly number of up votes against building rental housing, not even community but with financial incentives to the developer. Yet there is a great need for rental housing. You are the only one who has come forth with any ideas at all. Which leads me to believe the citizens of the feel good town like to feel good only about themselves. What is to be done about the growing number of homeless, with the sentiments expressed I would suspect many citizens would be in favour of the County placing bids for large commercial gas ovens.
Kevin in reply – this is not just about the very bottom but the strain it places on all renters. A starting rent of $2000 a month is rather hefty especially when you consider utilities on top. Your average renter is pressed to pay this taking away their ability to purchase in the economy you’ll see more businesses close especially with the Feds recent annoucement of more, more, more immigration with nothing built to house them or the people that already live here. Immigration at least should be halted.

Last edited 14 days ago by Dave
Ken Strauss
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

So, Dave, to consider some of the suggestions:
Rent is expensive so we should raise taxes to fund more construction. This will make workers poorer and less able to purchase necessities. A bad idea!

Raise wages so that everyone can afford housing. Without higher productivity this will make everything more expensive and start a wage/price spiral. A bad idea!

Immigration is straining our ability to house Canadians so pause immigration. Obviously an essential part of any solution!

Encourage people to live with less privacy (shared apartments). Two working at minimum wage can easily afford $2000/month for an apartment. Not good for families, but solves the problem for singles and halves the number of apartments required.

Dave
Reply to  Ken Strauss
14 days ago

Point 1 – fund more construction so we don’t have to raise minimum wages which causes the price of goods to rise for all and is just absorbed into the increased rental prices.
See Point 1 Ken – in doing this one will pay more for the goods you purchase in the end as it applies to a much broader spectrum of society. Increases to taxes will not be that high and will scale to people in the upper echelon of the tax bracket so perhaps they may have to give up dining at The Keg or vacation in Canada instead of Florida each year.
Point 3 -Pausing Immigration makes sense if you don’t have either the infrastructure, hospital care or housing available – we read how stressed all of our services are today each and every day.
Point 4 The widowed will have problems paying current rents, people on disability, seniors and as time goes on the retired as they worked for much lower wages in their day.
I know any kind of tax and you don’t want to contribute a cent Ken as another poster commented to you. However the higher income brackets are scaled higher than the lower as giving up a luxury is not as hard as giving up a necessity.

Sonya
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

Many people at the encampment and drug users everywhere would have a home to go to if they got off the drugs. That’s a fact. I personally know families that would take their drug user relative home is a flash if they got off the drugs.
People not using drugs usually can find housing eventually even if it is living in their parents basement ect. The majority of homeless people are drug addicted or suffering from mental illness.
Drug users are walking themselves into a gas chamber. Think about it.

Dave
Reply to  Sonya
14 days ago

Sonya have you not been reading my posts? This has nothing to do with the encampment and the drug addicted but people being priced out of the housing market that often have worked all their lives, people beginning that are not Einstein level that once there were apatments available for the even before raised minimum wage jobs, young people starting out beginning their independence, families that have factory jobs. I had so hoped the blog users would actually read my posts which so clearly state we are not talking drug addicted or even the bottom of the pile but people that rent below the ability to purchase a condo. So disapponting t write and find people don’t even read what you write. The drug addicted need rehab not housing.

Sonya
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

Yes I agree the drug addicted need rehab.
I was referring to the County report on homelessness and what was missing in that report.

Dave
Reply to  Sonya
14 days ago

I took it you were replying to me Sonya and the discussion around people greatly affected by the doubled and more rental rates as you marked the reply to me.

Leslie
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

“….with the sentiments expressed I would suspect many citizens would be in favour of the County placing bids for large commercial gas ovens…” What sentiments Dave?

With regard to evictions for “bad” tenants, Ken is right. It is becoming increasingly difficult to evict. Renters who become “squatters” — destroying & not paying rent. Pete just did a recent article, where the owner had to give “cash for keys”. Cash to the renter, who was not paying rent & destroyed her home, costing thousands. This is becoming an ever increasing problem. Protests all over.

You, yourself have spoken often about why the higher rents. That which you have spoken is off topic here — for this reason discussing “solutions” is futile & demonstrated to be endless.

https://todaysnorthumberland.ca/2024/03/05/video-cobourg-homeowner-coughs-up-four-grand-just-to-get-her-property-back-from-tenant/

Dave
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

Based on that logic Leslie we should not have renters at all. Myself I have never known anyone personally that has or had a bad renter but I have lived in buildings with hundreds who are not bad renters. Perhaps following that logic Leslie we shouldn’t allow anyone to drive as there are bad drivers out there.
The sentiments expressed by just now yourself, Ken and the upvotes for these kind of sentiments with blind eyes turned to the fact the rental market is in crisis. The report by County outlining many who became homeless due to the rising costs rather than prevent this and give relief to others spending an overportion of their income I take it the sentiment is who cares where they go. Sharpen the pencils and get the bids out the citizenship doesn’t care as so heartily expressed in this Blog.

Last edited 14 days ago by Dave
Leslie
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

Dave, you did not answer my question. I am not sure what you mean by “that logic”? I happen to agree with many of your “off topic” comments.

If you take a perusal of protests happening, you may better understand. It is unfortunate that “squatters” destroying rentals & not paying rent have created a huge distrust & reluctance for more rentals.

If you were an invested Landlord, would you want the government to protect your interests? We are not talking about a “small” number of destructive tenants.The link to Fisher’s video is a sign of what is coming.

Dave
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

Just read the replies I have received Leslie and the sentiments against assistance to build more rentals. How am I off topic when the head of this column reads County Report on Homelessness and as pointed out by John Draper it revolves around not the encampment, not the addicted but the long waiting lists for current county housing and the many unable to access it due to lack of apartments. Whether they be private or community the fact is there is a lack of apartments period and especially at any reasonable rent.
Should I have a property yes I would defintly consider renting it. I almost did just that with my former house as I neared retirement with a non-compensatable injury which made it impossible to do my job or work with a few too many years to retirement I found the best course Leslie was to sell. Hope I have answered all your questions.

Last edited 14 days ago by Dave
Leslie
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

I have not seen any sentiment to not build more rentals? I have read reasons why there may not be more, including my own.

I am referring to past fed comments, that are considered off topic, which again I stated I agreed with you.

Take good care.

Dave
Reply to  Leslie
14 days ago

I certainly feel badly for the woman Leslie. It states “after doing a background check” she rented to him. When I began to rent I was asked for prior confirmable references going back to time I was a homeowner. My first rental I was required to provide bank advisal as to the number of figures which represented the balance I had in the bank and after that references to past landlords which were professinonally managed properties all of which gave me an excellent reference and rating. I would have passed on the guy. There are courses for new landlords so they may avoid just such a situation just like when I was working – references, and as I was a driver – abstract and CVOR – all of which were clear but for bad drivers they show all past driving infractions.

Downtowner
Reply to  Dave
14 days ago

Dave, agree, a course for new landlords would be of assistance, after all this is commerce and the investor needs to protect their property. Meantime there have been years where renters didn’t meet their obligations and made empty promises of correcting the situation, probably using a family as a sympathy card ( happened in my personal experience with an alcoholic ) and the assumption of accumulated wealth of the provider making it OK for arrears. This is now somewhat coming to the fore as a new generation of entitlement surfaces and attitude of if l don’t pay, the government will take over my care. The result is a long cue of applicants for assisted housing and a hike in private unit pricing justified (in some owners minds)by the public reports of damage and abuse of property plus higher costs of materials to correct and restore their investment.The lines become blurred between real,respected need and abuse of a charitable system allowing for assistance to improvement…..not a lifestyle. So now we have investors raising prices to avoid being used and a government programs being abused and overloaded resulting in a rental crisis.l have no solution but observe that we have an rising number of people not willing to work for themselves to get ahead impacting the hard working middle-class struggling to maintain their independence.

Dave
Reply to  Downtowner
13 days ago

Hello Downtowner – I am not ignoring you – the reply I made to you and others who have addressed me and I have replied to were deleted.
All the best to people trying to make ends meet what with unrestricted immigration, weird disability claims exaberataing personal income taxes I can only say I am not in need but felt compassion for those facing increased costs through suddenly escalated rents of the past few years. It is not popular as others with homes are feeling concerns and do not want any increased costs thereby ruling out those that are in the rental market to decrease their own costs.

Last edited 13 days ago by Dave
Downtowner
Reply to  Dave
13 days ago

I am fortunate in my retirement to have a modest property and at this stage of my life reflect on struggles my partner and l weathered to achieve this level of comfort…..lay offs, cutback in hrs. at work, back to school training. We also re worked our lives to keep up with payments. Lots of walking to appointments, no dinners out, no hockey equipment, few celebrations small birthday parties for the kids, no money fun entertainment whenever possible. There are spaces where we may all tighten up to achieve a goal and set aside keeping up with the Jones ‘ to appreciate what we have . I feel the rental prices are very high and properties scarce. But minimum wage is 20$. Was 1.25 in my youth ..doable then. doable now just not the high life. but may still be a happy life. We can’t blame everything on the Government or depend on it for everything.

Dave
Reply to  Downtowner
13 days ago

Good for you Downtowner, reasons I am afloat today. However I recall my wife returned for some upgrade training, something she did periodically throughout her working life, and a willingness to work in various capacities as I did myself. In one extensive training she took she followed up with the other class members after. Many found jobs but at half of what they made before and there were others that were left high and dry just like when they began the training through no fault of their own but their best before date being what is known as a mature worker.
These last few years rents have doubled and more I don’t see how the need for further rental housing can be ignored and preferrably private market, not government housing.
Have a nice day. I don’t believe in the tremendous increases to the minimum wage – they only add to the already inflated costs. Comparative to yours Downtowner in my youth minumum wage when I started full time at age 15 was much lower.

Last edited 13 days ago by Dave
Andre
17 days ago

While reading the report I thought about government eagerness to grow a dependent class of “clients” whose votes they can own, and children growing up within that situation who accept it as normal.

Instead of saying the economy is bad, ask why is it bad? Everyone will have a different answer but a common theme goes back to government. To illustrate what I mean, Canadian success story Magna International could never start today. Better schools and a pro-business attitude would do many social workers out of a job.

Word searching the document for “drug”, or “fentanyl” strikes out while the word “addiction” dares to appear only once. Why is that?

Last edited 17 days ago by Andre
Downtowner
Reply to  Andre
16 days ago

Agree Andre, the way of life fully or partly dependent on Government “charity” has become generational now.Assistance without strings is problematic, as we are seeing develop.Seemingly gone, for many, are the days when we raise our children to strive for greatness….independently and on their own. Social Services needs an overhaul with accountability for the recipients…to the best of their abilities an effort to build their own lives ( with core counselling) and efforts on their own behalf. ..this would gain independence for many, perhaps what is not, as you suggest,the plan of Governments.

Merle Gingrich
17 days ago

Governments at ALL levels keep looking for ways not to get anything done THAN solutions to getting things done. Don’t be afraid to make a mistake, mistakes can be fixed.

Liz
Reply to  Merle Gingrich
16 days ago

Who foots the bill for the security guards at the encampment?

Gerry
Reply to  Liz
16 days ago

There is only one taxpayer.

Rational
17 days ago

The County stated the Encampment is not safe for Social Workers to attend.

It follows then that if the Encampment is deemed unsafe by the County it is also unsafe for Cobourg Fire, Ambulance and CPS. Cobourg Fire, Ambulance and CPS, imo, would be justified in no longer attending calls or situations at the Encampment. Let the Enablers/Security Services who guard the entrance sort it out.

Last edited 17 days ago by Rational
Sandpiper
17 days ago

Its a Total Sham Not 1 inch of Progress made by this County on this Topic
in a Decade in fact its worse of now
Elgin st has taken 4 – 5 years to build 20 to 40 Units when we have a 10 year wait list
we are definitely going in Reverse
Not to mention they Demolished 50 units to build 40 and now have huge Cost Overruns
The Couty can’t even Count or keep track of what they have in Inventory
Lets stop Paying them until they can produce . every thing they touch is a LOOSE
Loose situation The cost over runs and losses a the The Grafton Recycle , The Agri building in Colborne the Golden Plough This is not Responsible / Accountable Governing

Bryan
17 days ago

Q. (by Mandy) When is council going to look at overall picture (not just Cobourg) and when are we going to look at Cobourg’s By-Law?A. We are working with Cobourg and expect an “Agreement” at the next Council meeting.This is worrisome.
What is the Town (staff) agreeing to?
Rescinding the 310 bylaw? That would be a big mistake. Gives away the Town’s leverage
Water down the BL by removing the penalties. Again, a big mistake. Eliminates the Town’s leverage and makes the BL a toothless tiger.

Does the agreement make Cobourg a “partner” in 310?
To what end?
What is the benefit to Cobourg?
There is no power because the other two partners will ignore (outvote and bully) the Town.
The Town has no expertise in running/providing social housing, rehab or mental health facilities/services.
Cobourg gains nothing from being party to a “310” agreement. It has nothing to contribute and much to lose

Last edited 17 days ago by Bryan
Kathleen
Reply to  Bryan
17 days ago

Police & Fire services NEED to be a shared cost within the County (if not the Province). Cobourg taxpayers should NOT have to shoulder all the added cost with the encampment and 310.

Sonya
Reply to  Bryan
17 days ago

County Social workers are afraid to go to the encampment so they leave the work up to the enabling advocates to move these folks on to housing or rehab.
The advocates that strategically placed these people at brookside as a protest in order to get sleeping cabins.
The advocates that welcome new people to come live at brookside. The more people the better for their cause.
The advocates that buy them winter tents and wood stoves and feed them well so they’ll stay at brookside.
This is really ******up.

Rational
Reply to  Bryan
16 days ago

Valid points.

And as the County deems the Encampment unsafe, then 310 D will also be unsafe as it is the intent to place Encampment residents at 310 D as well as giving those who want to stay at the Encampment 24/7 access.

Rob
Reply to  Rational
16 days ago

You’re not wrong Rational. They will end up at 310D or in another type of County run social housing program because no private landlord, in their right mind, would rent to any of them. They need the addiction & mental health services at 310D before housing…

Sonya
Reply to  Bryan
16 days ago

Mandy shows no concern whatsoever for Cobourg citizens safety.
Just open 310 and get it over with type of attitude.
I couldn’t believe what I was hearing. Time to take a hike Mandy. We want safe and clean streets in Cobourg. It’s our right to have that. So do our kids and seniors.

Leslie
Reply to  Sonya
16 days ago

Zero concern shown. County staff felt unsafe last summer @ William St., so cleared. “Advocates” strategically moved them to Provincial land, because they had the “Legal Help” knowledge of damaging Waterloo decision. County’s complete absence of concern expressed towards the townspeople’s wellbeing is abhorrent and shameful.

Defenseless kids safety walking to and from Gummow and CCI daily, is not a concern — yet County staff’s safety is paramount.

The”advocates” are in control and County appears to be working with them, despite outcry from constituents. Dreadful County Leadership.

Now 310 opening — after tourist season.

Sonya
Reply to  Leslie
16 days ago

You’re right. THE COUNTY HAS ZERO CONCERN FOR COBOURG RESIDENTS.
No bylaw then no 310.

Give me a break
Reply to  Sonya
16 days ago

why should they as long as the challenge resides in Cobourg ….. where is our Deputy Mayor and other council members in pushing to equalize the responsiveness ……

Give me a break
Reply to  Sonya
16 days ago

We should help move a few of the folks at the encampment to Mandy’s township ….. we could even get folks in Cobourg to foot the bill for transportation, tents and even food for a month ….. the same for holier than thou Port Hope at the GWC headquarters, the beach at Brighton and Campbellford …… if you look at the progress made at the new Golden Plough you can understand that the County folks are not qualified for their jobs ….. from the top down …

Sonya
Reply to  Give me a break
14 days ago

It’s a good idea really. Leave 310 for the truly homeless because the drug users won’t go there. There’s too many rules.
Build something different in cobourne on Mandys street for the drug users to burn down or destroy using Mandy’s tax dollars.

Gerry
17 days ago

Why does the word Bamboozled come to mind anytime County says anything?

Rob
17 days ago

I think it must is hard to tout the report as positive – I suspect one of the ways you do this is by not referencing the >50 addicted encampers who are illegally occupying land that my Provincial taxes are paying for.

Its difficult to address an issue if you refuse to name it and omitting the encampment, in an effort to present a more politically positive outcome, does little improve the untenable situation. Its similar to the CPS telling taxpayers that things aren’t unsafe, they just feel unsafe.

What is see is a vacancy rate that hasn’t changed in 7 years. A waiting list for community housing that has only grown longer during that same time (10-years). In 10 years that single mom with an 8 & 9 year old, will have two children in college/university?! The waiting list might as well be 30 years, because no one can afford to wait 10.

These things are stated as facts, for which the County appears to take no accountability for and has little by way of answers.

Cobourg taxpayer
17 days ago

I am so so sick of committees, landbanks of shovel ready projects, reports and general pats on the back for most of county council. There has been no substantial work at 310 Division due to the bylaw passed by Cobourg town council to attempt to protect the majority of the town residents. And it is now crystal clear that county social workers do not attend the encampment due to safety concerns???? Hello does county council not hear the ridiculousness in this?? What about the rest of us who live in close proximity to the encampment and feel unsafe every day and night? What are we paying these social workers for, is this not their profession????
Passing of the buck once again. On another note while I have some sympathy for not being able to afford a home, to be on a wait list for 10 years seems very strange, what have those waiting done to improve their lot in 10 years other then wait?

Sandpiper
Reply to  Cobourg taxpayer
17 days ago

Didn’t you know they all work REMOTLEY
and still receive full Pay

cornbread
Reply to  Cobourg taxpayer
17 days ago

The more taxpayers provide, there will be a growing number who line up for benefits. The younger generations are afraid to work?? Many auto mechanics are needed in the Cobourg area…there are jobs, just nobody wants to fill the spots and work…easier to get a hand-out from govt.

Downtowner
17 days ago

John, in the section of your post…What’s missing .,.you point out that the illegal activity that the encampment residents are all guilty of at the very core is trespassing. I would add to that , that these folks don’t even acknowledge that very basic violation….in fact have a sign posted inviting tours of their squat, thereby inviting the public to join in this illegal activity ….completely oblivious to any crime being committed or that by the invitation open others to that crime as well

Cobourg taxpayer
Reply to  Downtowner
17 days ago

The squatters have been coached very carefully by the Legal Help Centre and other enablers that it is their right to trespass and squat there. A list of those contributing to the help centre would show where some of our tax money goes. I attended a homeless panel at CCI last year where participating members proclaimed public property can be used by all. I listened to one panellist say he didn’t like the quality of the mattresses at Transition House and had to move back in with his father. It boggles the mind.

Downtowner
Reply to  Cobourg taxpayer
16 days ago

Could suggest that some of these folks do have a place to go….just choosing to be unhoused and “helpless until no other choice suits them..Conforming to a few rules is unachievable until necessary l would guess.

Sonya
Reply to  Downtowner
16 days ago

Most of the people living at the encampment have been thrown out of their housing with friends and families because of their drug induced behaviours. Most would have a home to go back to if they got off the drugs.
It’s a drug problem, not a housing problem with these individuals.

Downtowner
Reply to  Sonya
14 days ago

For my personal experience this is true….first families wish change for their loved ones and now we, community, wish it also for these folks. All toward an end of peaceful, productive life….it starts with the individual ..society is already reaching out….. not for us to make a move.

Downtowner
17 days ago

It’s as if the County has blinders on to the real sociatal problems that have arisen due to their inability to make efforts to address the three separate issues our community is trying to heal. I recognize that the occupation of the encampment is, at this point, a Provincial headache, however , the impact on the Town needs to have consideration for any forward progress. The development of 310 Division street as housing only could go a distance to place several individuals, now homeless, in a short timeline. The development of this property as a multi purpose ” bandaid” for a three pronged problem….mental health, addiction, and homelessness, is now and will always be a mistake for the downtown area.The three problems require three different plans of action. The County continues to spin it’s tires.

Cathy
Reply to  Downtowner
16 days ago

Exactly downtowner. If the skills/expertise isn’t there now to deal with these issues, perhaps the powers that be need to search for it. Olena mentioned in passing the idea of a residential treatment center. This is something that should be discussed further. They could go for a modular build, and get the faster build funding from the province. 310 is a place to stay, nothing more. However, a detox/rehab center would be helpful. As well as the jobs that would be created.

Rob
Reply to  Cathy
16 days ago

Cathy – if only there was a large building, located near County services, pharmacies, the hospital, shopping…a building with adequate parking, individual rooms, large common areas for group session with a kitchen that could provide food service to a large number of residents…

If only we could Give People Living quarters while in recovery. That would be a dream.

Why isn’t the County being lambasted on this location – telling taxpayers “they can’t” isn’t enough! Where is the transparency! The County is failing Cobourg

Cathy
Reply to  Rob
16 days ago

My thoughts exactly. If seniors are living there now, why isn’t it safe for others?

Leslie
Reply to  Rob
16 days ago

There are over 60 OHIP covered (“free”) Rehabilitation Treatment Centres in Ontario. You are fast-tracked if an opioid user, homeless or pregnant. Transportation is also covered (“free”). Why the necessity for one in Cobourg? It has been reported numerous times professional help has been refused. Last summer addicts could have gone to 4Cast, started process and potentially be on road to recovery.

Unfortunately Treatment facilities often bring their own problems. Addicts bringing drugs into treatment facilities to sell and dealers circling around like vultures looking for prey/ “potential customers”. GPL is also close to a school.

Downtowner
Reply to  Cathy
16 days ago

The very beginning has to be realization that society and Government doesn’t need a change to provide more as much as the individuals expressing need have to change to be provided with their allowances But it is pie in the sky to anticipate many of these folks would make the call that they need change as long as there are enablers and agendas toward acceptance of this costly lifestyle……costly for taxpayers. Boundaries and limits need to be placed on the hand outs. At the very least an address before a housing allowance is included in the disability pensions many of the encamped are still receiving in full.

Give me a break
Reply to  Cathy
16 days ago

Maybe Olena can get together with GWC folks to get one underway in PH but NIMBY will prevail…. Maybe the current Health Centre in PH could be used.

Bill Thompson
Reply to  Downtowner
16 days ago

Perhaps the order of importance of the major problem should be in this progression……Addiction,,mental health deterioration resulting in homelessness..
Until the law penalty of being a drug dealer is increased significantly ,this curse will never end as they are killers and should be treated as such.

NAI
Reply to  Downtowner
16 days ago

4 pronged problem – add entitlement. Many of those in dire straits could lift themselves out if they stopped waiting for someone to save them.