National strategy needed for homelessness

A solution formula would be education, a federal increment to corporate taxation, a basic income plan, and a mental health strategy

After attending Hope’s Monday night council meeting, I now understand why I may become the towns next homeless victim. It has also become clear why the town of Hope has already scheduled four consecutive budget increases for the next four years ahead.

It is clear that homelessness/poverty has become a national emergency, brought on by mental illness, including trauma induced PTSD, and substance addiction. Since the federal governments of past and present refuse to deal with this countrywide dilemma, provincial and municipal governments, as well as do gooder charities, have decided to jump on the band wagon, and make a meal out of it. Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against the homeless or the mentally ill. In fact, I’ve been homeless myself, as well as suffering a lifetime from PTSD (no fault of mine). But for municipal governments to deal with homelessness and mental illness is beyond ridiculous. Not only do they not have the expertise, there is no possible way that we as a community can afford to annually increment our budgets, or do we have the resources to do so, for something that is totally outside our jurisdiction.

It was obvious and laughable to watch the various proponents to scurry in and out of the room to avoid possible conflict of interest, to maintain their glutinous greed on the pretext of helping out those who need our compassion and professional help, when the help they are providing only maintains the status quo, and keeps the proponents gainfully employed.

From personal experience, I can assuredly attest that type of help would only keep me dependent on the system, and the proponents employed. It’s a never-ending expensive cycle with few real beneficiaries, other than the administrators. What took me away from homelessness, was somebody was kind enough to offer me a job. Homelessness is, or at least, should be a federal responsibility. What we need to end homelessness in Canada, is a national strategy. It’s time we all put pressure on our federal government to pony up and do the right thing. If they can afford to subsidize the Alberta Tar Sands and major corporations, then they can afford to look after those in society who need the help most.

A solution formula for homelessness would be education, a federal increment to corporate taxation, which is ridiculously low, a basic income plan, and a mental health strategy. To continue on the path we’re on of increasing municipal taxes will eventually drive us all there!

Art Green

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