Letters: December 2017

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Re: “Who Belongs Downtown?

As a downtown business owner ( I own the Speak Easy Cafe ) I wanted to express my opinion of tbe Downtown Ambassadors.

We used their services 5 times in the few short weeks they were available to us. Having them on call so to speak made me feel better about leaving staff at the restaurant. The recurring issue for us is drunk/high or mentally ill people coming into the restaurant and creating problems for us and the customers. We are not trained to deal with these issues….the police are. They take on average 30 minutes to reach us. The ambassadors 5 or 10 minutes. We were so grateful to have them! The on going issue of our downtown is

  1. Drugs and methadone clinics
  2. Panhandlers on every corner
  3. Prostitution
  4. Lack of police presence
  5. Aggressive language and fighting amongst “undesirables” for lack of a better word.

At my cafe people are given the opportunity to donate money to buy a sandwich or a coffee as opposed to giving money to panhandlers. We have been running this program for almost 3 years now. It has generated over $7,000 per year in donations.

People like giving this way.

We were never approached by the 2 women doing their downtown interviews and would like them to know we offer this service.

The ambassador program was a huge success in my eyes and we would love to see it return. Or if that cannot happen then we would like to see police officers walking the “beat” downtown as they used to.
Also the prostitution problems need to be addresses by police. The glaring question is always. “If we know where they are hanging out why don’t the police?” On Bethune St can be seen prostitution going on all day and night. The “johns” are the ones we need to target. Without a demand there is no supply.

Thank you for your efforts

Vickie Karikas

Peterborough’s Slogan

Re: “What’s in a Slogan?

This is a perfect opportunity to put the first name of this place, Nogojiwanong beside Peterborough. It’s simple. It’s true. It’s about time.

Peg Town


A Holiday Reminder

The holiday season is upon us once again, it’s a time for celebration, joy and happiness. Unfortunately for many in the homeless community it is a time of despair and sadness. These are the invisible people who are ignored and forgotten by most. A lot of my friends live in the shadows amongst us. Please let’s not forget them at this time of year. Most of these people receive nothing at Christmas time, they are often estranged from family and friends so please lets show them someone cares, ask your friends, your co-workers, your classmates, your congregation, your neighbours, your union brothers and sisters if they would help you fill up a backpack with items that might bring some happiness and comfort to someone who is in need at this time of year, it might be the only time they smile on Christmas Day when they will be distributed. Items could include a warm hooded sweatshirt, warm socks, long underwear, gloves and a toque, a coffee travel mug, a hairbrush, disposable razors, lip balm, a deck of cards or any items you think might bring a bit of happiness to the forgotten. Backpacks should be labelled if they are for a male or female friend and can be dropped off at Peterborough Social Planning Council (lower level Ptbo Square) to the attention of Carol’s Place. If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me.

Dan Hennessey

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