LETTER: Supportive housing in Langley is a ‘great opportunity’

A Langley letter writer speaks out in favour of transforming the Quality Inn.

Dear Editor,

I am writing in response to the letter written by Charles Ji on Wednesday, Nov. 15.

READ: Langley’s Quality Inn and nearby liquor store a bad mix

Charles Ji is against the location of the proposed supportive housing project mainly because of its proximity to a large liquor store.

The proposed location is on 200th street between 64th and 65th avenue, basically in the centre of Langley.

This housing project is also in walking distance of many businesses where the homeless could have a better opportunity in securing a job.

The homeless need safe beds to sleep in at night and a place to call home and have a community.

Mr. Ji fails to prove that there is anything truly wrong with the proposed location of the supportive housing project.

Mr. Ji states that 53 per cent of the homeless community in the Lower Mainland are addicted to drugs and 38 per cent are mentally ill.

That does not necessarily mean that these are the specific statistics for Langley.

In addition, the homeless community that is addicted to drugs may also be the same ones that suffer from mental illness, meaning that there may be 47 per cent of the homeless community who are unaccounted for in these statistics.

Mr. Ji may not be giving enough credit to this 47 per cent as they may be out there looking for jobs or trying to contribute but may be limited by physical disability or just how they appear to employers and the community.

Mr. Ji also writes a lot of different consequences and outcomes of mixing drugs with alcohol.

We all know that it is unhealthy for anyone to mix these substances as they react differently with everyone’s bodies, but if the homeless community was given a home and the opportunity to find a job and have stability that could be a reason to kick a drug habit and to become a more contributing member of society.

Finally, there is nowhere in Langley that is away from liquor stores, family homes, or elementary schools because that’s what Langley is built on.

Rezoning the Quality Inn is a great opportunity to help our homeless community live better lives.

Belle Hernberg-Johnson, Langley

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