Pubdate: Wed, 30 Aug 2006
Source: Prince George Citizen (CN BC)
Copyright: 2006 Prince George Citizen
Author: Andrew Tejero


Re: Lots of jobs out there (letter, Aug. 29).

If you ever spent a moment with a person who suffers from addiction
and poverty you'd understand that the solution is not just as easy as
telling someone to get a job. Some people don't have the means to get
training or even to maintain an appropriate level of hygiene.

What prospective employer would hire an employee like that? Would you
hire an employee that might only shower once a week or maybe didn't
brush their teeth? Sometimes a person can't afford toothpaste, or even
have a place to bathe, or a home. There might be years of addiction,
alcoholism or substance abuse that has to be addressed first before he
or she can even hope to find employment.

The problem on our streets is addiction and violence. These concerns
need to be addressed by whatever means are available. If some taxpayer
money has to be spent for the creation of a safe injection site, then
so be it. At least then the logistics of trying to tackle the issues
at hand are focused into a tangible area. I don't think anyone in
their mind likes being addicted to drugs or taking handouts. For these
people trying to change things is hard, and making that choice is much
harder. On top of it all, there are decades of abuse, neglect and
self-esteem issues that are often a burden on the shoulders of some of
these people.

It's time to take a practical approach instead of the almighty ideal
of "have some pride" and "pick yourself up." Honestly, if it where
that easy then we wouldn't have this problem. I think as a community
we should do what we can to help, and certainly having a little
compassion would be a start.

Andrew Tejero

Prince George
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