Like a dog chasing its tail ….

Crime-ridden Clearbrook issued a call for an interesting variation of the NIMBY syndrome, calling on the City of Abbotsford to solve their crime problems by driving this mayhem into other neighbourhoods. With neighbours like that …

Although one can see why residents advocate this course of action, since many of Clearbrook’s current crime problems arise as a result of actions by the Downtown Business Association (DBA), it remains a very un-neighbourly way to behave and ultimately self-defeating.

While the previous paragraphs have a certain tongue-in-cheek component, at their core is a solid truth. The police are not a solution, clearly demonstrated by Clearbrook’s current difficulties. Months ago, when the DBA was using the police to drive many of the homeless out of the downtown area and away from their survival support systems, I pointed out all they were really doing was being bad neighbours, inflicting their problems on their neighbours throughout the city.

It is currently Clearbrook’s misfortune and massive headache that they are the victims of the major portion of the fallout of the Downtown Abbotsford Businesses behaviour. That the calamity currently befalling Clearbrook is thanks to the DBA, is no excuse to solve Clearbrook’s problems by inflicting them on another neighbourhood. All the police would do is chase the problem out of Clearbrook into someone else’s backyard – nice for Clearbrook, hard on the sacrificial neighbourhood.

The uncomfortable, perhaps even painful truth is that the only way to solve these problems, as opposed to just inflicting them on someone else, is to stop repeating what we have done over and over ad nauseum to no avail, and begin to act with thought, planning, deliberation and commitment to actually end the problems with housing and support services that have led to Clearbrook’s miseries.

It is not by accident that Clearbrook, with no social support such as the Food Bank or Salvation Army, is being laid waste by crime. Lacking any support the homeless and those living in poverty must in effect pillage the Clearbrook neighbourhood for their daily survival. We can either keep the homeless et al moving from neighbourhood to neighbourhood like a ravaging Mongol horde until they arrive back at their starting point in downtown old Abbotsford OR we can take intelligent actions.

Insanely keep doing the same thing over and over hoping for a different outcome this time OR think and act to end homelessness. Choose, although it does seem a pretty clear choice to this citizen.

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