Penticton Western News letters to the editor.

Letter: Instead of attacking RCMP, find solutions together

The problem of crime in Penticton is a difficult one to solve

The problem of crime in Penticton is a difficult one to solve (Penticton not an unsafe city, according to RCMP superintendent, Dec. 19, Western News).

Most areas of Canada are grappling with this challenge which is being fuelled by the opioid drug crisis and a huge number of other problems. Whether or not the statistics reported in MacLean’s magazine truly represent the situation in Penticton is difficult to say, as experts differ on the meaning. Without a doubt, both the problem and the solutions are complex and multi-dimensional.

However, our mayor’s public attack on RCMP Superintendent Ted De Jager will surely not solve the difficult issues we are facing. It was shocking to read of the disrespect shown to De Jager during his recent report to council. If we are to teach our children to respect the police, then surely our mayor and council must be the first to model appropriate behaviour. Inflaming the issues by describing “terrified citizens” is out of proportion and unhelpful. Neither will vague, unverifiable statements such as “it’s not as safe as it used to be,” get us anywhere.

Crime, its prevention and punishment is a multi-layered problem with societal, political and cultural roots. The origins of crime lie in poverty, lack of education, abuse, drug abuse, lack of meaningful employment, housing needs and mental health issues. Law and order is only one prong of the tools necessary to deal with the challenge and the police cannot be expected to solve all of these problems.

Instead of attacking the RCMP, our mayor and council (and indeed all of us) need to be asking how we can work together to make our beautiful city a better place to live. Showing respect doesn’t mean we will not hold the RCMP accountable as we must always do, but it does give us a meaningful place to start.

Allison Howard


Just Posted

Gas leak on Penticton’s South Main Street delays motorists on Friday

A detour is being set up on Parkview Street to avoid the Lee Avenue and Crescent Hill intersection

Penticton RCMP reviewing sexual assault claims

Thirty-eight per cent of the sexual assault reports in 2018 were deemed “unfounded” by RCMP

Prolific offender to return to Penticton court Monday for bail hearing

Lloyd John Baptiste was arrested for domestic-related offences in July this year

Penticton and Salmon Arm will duke it out tonight for division lead

Penticton Vees and Salmon Arm Silverbacks meet in Penticton tonight for Interior Division lead

Penticton Museum hosting Brown Bag Lecture

Wildlife and Recreation is the topic of the next Penticton Museum Brown Bag Lecture Series

VIDEO: Disney Plus adds disclaimer about racist stereotypes

Disney’s disclaimer is a good way to begin discussion about the larger issue of racism

Advertising restrictions frustrate Salmon Arm cannabis retailers

Retail prices off-putting to some, but businesses finding supportive clientele

New case of vaping-related illness in Quebec brings national total to 8

Quebec health minister considering tightening the rules around vaping products

Greens to vote against Liberal throne speech unless carbon targets toughened: May

Green leader Elizabeth May and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau met Friday, discussing common ground

Kelowna mayor apologizes for initial reaction to sexual assault statistics

The mayor issued the statement after he came under heavy fire from a sexual assault survivor

First Nations ‘optimistic’ about road upgrades after Horgan visits site of fatal bus crash

Premier travelled Bamfield Main road, where bus flipped last September and two students were killed

Morning Start: The man who invented the Pringles can was buried in one

Your morning start for Friday, November 15, 2019

Most Read