Pubdate: Thu, 10 Jul 2008
Source: Westerly News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2008 Westerly News
Author: Scott MacDonald


Dear Editor,

Re: Community Care Society strategy for freedom from drugs, Westerly News,
July 3

I talked with a member of the Community Care Society a few months ago
and we agreed there was a real lack of facilities for treating
addiction in our community. Addiction is often associated with mental
illness and the treatment for both is often similar. A lack of
facilities for helping people who suffer mental illness in Ucluelet
probably explains why so few are available for addiction.

The mental health and addictions workers we're fortunate to have do
their best, but they need more money, resources, infrastructure, and
above all more community support. Recall about a year ago that another
caring community group pressured the municipal government to vote
against a Vancouver Island Health Authority assisted living facility
in Ucluelet.

Addicts and mentally ill people share another sad fate. Forcing them
out of their communities takes them away from their families and
friends and the only people likely to ever care or love them enough to
help them in the first place. It's not hard to imagine how isolation
and estrangement might cause people to want to take even more drugs
and alcohol.

The Community Care Society member I talked to also agreed that every
possible solution to the problems associated with substance use needed
to be explored. This included inviting LEAP, Law Enforcement Against
Prohibition, to come and speak in our community.

Judging by the tone of the articles the society has been putting out
it appears this is no longer an option. I think the community needs to
really open its mind and consider other opinions no matter how
contrary they may seem.

Many law enforcement professionals, judges, lawyers, and prosecutors
have come to the conclusion that the war on drugs is a solution that's
worse than the problem. To 'win' it the country and probably the whole
planet will have to be turned into one vast snitch-based police-state,
kind of like Stalin's.

I'd like to know exactly why the Community Care Society says the RCMP
are helpless to do anything and why our legal system is so paralyzed.
Is it because the war on drugs is floundering against our Charter of
Rights and Freedoms and the legal system can see this writing on the

Why should municipal legislation or civil laws be any more legal or
effective at solving the problems some people are having with
substance use? If this notion sounds too good to be true it probably

How much is a new municipal front on an endless useless and very
expensive war on drugs going to cost the taxpayer? A lot more than a
decent treatment facility and some realistic public education and
support I think.

Scott MacDonald

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