Letter: Respect is a two-way street

Editor:

Re: Todd Sullivan’s column of July 15 regarding the pledge to choose words carefully when discussing addiction (‘Take the pledge with me’):

It is true that words and labels can be stigmatizing.

However, this is not the main issue with drug users and does not address the behaviours that accompany drug use.

Kamloops This Week has published stories about verbal threats and other objectionable acts witnessed by business owners on West Victoria Street.

We have needles left on our streets and parks, graffiti on our buildings, theft and, of course, vandalism.

In fact, Kamloops City Hall, which donated the land for the two new supportive housing facilities on West Victoria Street, was recently targeted and had its windows smashed.

Until drug users amend their behaviours and avail themselves of the services offered, attitudes towards them will continue to be negative.

The pledge is only a cosmetic approach to a much more serious problem.

Roger Parker

Kamloops

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