Letter: House Richmond's homeless or have homelessness; it’s our choice

Dear Editor,

Re: “Growing tent city in Richmond raising residents’ ire,” Richmond-News.com.

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I am confused, folks are complaining about the homeless camp in Hamilton, yet a short time ago they were complaining about the Temporary Modular Housing project intended to house those very same people now sleeping in tents.

Most of these folks sleeping rough would rather not live in the rain and scrounge for food with the constant threat of assault hanging over their heads — yes, this type of homelessness is a violent, cruel life filled with fear.

Many of these folks are emotionally or mentally unwell, and I don’t have to tell you that destroying the camp will simply force them to move somewhere else.

The solution must be long term and it must address the social and emotional causes of homelessness for each individual. It will take money, it will take time and it will take resolve.

We must commit to giving these folks a hand-up, not a hand-out. A hand-up is more work, but it will resolve the issue, not put a patch on it.

We have the expertise in Richmond, it is time for city council to sit with the experts and give them the tools to do their good work.

Scott Stewart

RICHMOND

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