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Angie, do you have a view on why these people aren’t being helped by their families?
This problem is never going to be fixed; there just isn’t the will to fix it, only to offer sympathy (to the addicts rather than those adversely affected by them) and make excuses (complex issues, takes time,etc). I think the police introduced the PSPO as propaganda. The PSPO is supposed to make the public feel that the issue is being taken seriously. The public are not supposed to notice that the PSPO is not being enforced.
These services won’t move elsewhere – I expect when their night shelter buildings were first approved it was on the basis of claiming to alleviate the drug problem in Wrexham. No other area of Wrexham will now believe these services do that and be willing to accept them. These services offer addicts a bed for the night and then turf them out into the surrounding neighbourhood during the day – therefore wherever the services are sited, the addicts will loiter, and it is the people living near to those services that will suffer as a result. After seeing what’s happened to Rhosddu, no one’s going to want these services co-located in their neighbourhoods.
I ask you now – what if it was one of your children, or grandchildren that had made a wrong choice? What then? Would you be so quick to condemn?
We don’t necessarily need to imagine about how we might behave towards these people IF they were our relatives – it is already clear that these people have effectively been abandoned by their own relatives and friends. I doubt this was an easy decision. How bad must the situation have become for a family to prefer their relative to be living on the streets or in a tent than to provide them with shelter?
Last night, during 70mph winds and battered by torrential rain, they had no shelter save for a tent.
If the council had left dogs in the dog pound in those conditions, the town would be up in arms.
Personally, I think the dog analogy is a bad one. Dogs have very little autonomy – their living conditions depend entirely on humans and what we provide them with or permit them to do. Also, if they are deemed to be violent and beyond redemption, they get euthanized; they don’t get given chance after chance.
In fact, it annoys me that we’re told a sob story about how the empty days with nowhere to go are unbearable for the ‘homeless’. I fill my days with work. I would love to have every day off. If I became bored I could volunteer for charity. Or go to the library and read or use a computer – this would give them a warm place to spend their time. But they would of course have to adhere to rules and acceptable standards of behaviour – things that they seem determined not to do.
Is it, as alluded to in JP’s post, really necessary for society to provide them with food, shelter and something to do during the daytime? These things are not provided to me. There is a distasteful sense of entitlement – everything should be handed to them on a plate while they behave however they like.
Yes, the hospital area is another good example, although a bit closer to town. Anywhere as long as it’s not in the retail centre and as long as it’s cheap. Maybe somewhere along Ruthin Road?
If I lived on Ruthin Road or one of the streets along there, I would be mortified at this suggestion. I don’t understand why there isn’t already joined-up thinking amongst the service providers involved. I don’t think these service providers give two hoots about the economic impact on the town centre or to residents having to live near this day after day. They’ve already co-located themselves in a particular area.
In fact, why aren’t Tŷ Croeso and Tŷ Nos open during he day? [Tŷ Nos is of course stating in its very name that it only intends to cater for the night time.] These buildings are wasted space during the day – could they not get enough volunteers to staff the buildings during the day so that addicts have a place to go?
They can be housed next to me when they’re ready to take that step – at the moment they’re not and need a lot of support.
So if they’re not ready to be housed next to you, where would you have them housed?
What do people think of the mural? http://www.wrexham.gov.uk/english/council/news/arcade_murals.htm
I find it incredibly grey and dull. But perhaps that’s a perfect fit for the people’s market. I look at it and wonder whether coloured paint was too expensive.
‘99DylanJones’, don’t you get weary of hearing the same old excuses?
Have you ever noticed how just about any organisation which purports to be dealing with the ‘homeless’ problem in Wrexham (e.g. charities and churches), or any organisation which the public feel should be dealing with it (e.g. council and police), repeatedly claim that they are actively looking at ways of offering support? For example, it’s a complicated problem, these people have complex issues, it won’t be solved overnight, we need to be patient, it’s a small core of troublemakers, they’re looking at how services can be more joined up, and so on. Yet nothing of any real consequence actually happens to remedy the issues. These organisations all just trot out the same excuses – and the church is no different in that regard, yet likes to portray itself as some sort of kind hearted moral authority. The church would be happy for these people to be rehoused, but would not give a moment’s thought for how that would impact the lives of the people they’re rehoused next door to. The church doesn’t want to take them in itself (for understandable reasons), but would quite happily see one of them moved into a home next to mine – or yours.
Substance abuse and homelessness are not new issues. And the organisations involved in these issues are not new to dealing with them. They should have foreseen this situation and proactively headed it off instead of waiting for the public to become so outraged at drug abuse in Wrexham that these organisations felt obliged to offer up their platitudes.
Open Minds is a rehab organisation – though they are not a charity and I’ve no idea of their fees. If their own website (http://www.openmindsrehab.com/index.php) is to be believed they have a very high (more than 90%) success rate. They appear to have very reasonable rules – but importantly those rules appear to be rigorously applied. I wonder whether the do-gooders meddling in Wrexham’s ‘homeless’ scene could take on a bit of that approach, without it costing very much. It seems to me that service providers are too keen to excuse the behaviour of their service users and that they are failing to distinguish between sympathising and enabling.
churches opening their doors sounds admirable but would you like to be the caretaker or warden cleaning up the mess each day, and the cost to churches to replace the damage they would inevitably do.
But churches are supposedly brimming with Christian charity. Maybe they could get volunteers from homeless / drug charities to perform the clean up / repairs of the church after the druggies have spent a night there.
I have no expectation that ‘the church’ will do anything significant (I think one had some sort of coffee and a chat event during the day a few months ago) – only that they COULD do something but choose not to. I have a spare room; I too COULD do something but choose not to – but I am not a church espousing Christian values / charity. The fact is that churches are unused space during the night and churches would clearly rather keep it that way than provide a refuge for people who would otherwise have to sleep outside in all manner of weather conditions.
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