Editor, the Times:
Regardless of where we stand on the question of needle exchange for drug addicts, one thing is certain: the forum held Jan. 29 was not unbiased.
Speakers wanting to posit views not in line with Fraser Health, were generally cut short. The moderator, Dr.
Adrienne Chan wasted a lot of time 'rephrasing' questions from the floor, as if the common folk don't know how to speak English, and as if the panel were too dull to comprehend the questions posed to them.
Dr. Chan and Fraser Health narrowed the scope of the meeting so that the focus was neatly confined to the parameters designed to make a compelling case for their demand that our City remove the by-law that forbids needle-exchange in Abbotsford.
You want to bring up the science, proving needle exchange programs don't result in a decrease in Hepatitis C? Nope, this forum won't allow a discussion of the research papers. And anyway, all naysayers "lie using statistics" . . . a comment the learned Dr. Chan did in fact read out.
Anyone wanting to propose that detox actually works, and helps people to escape the terrible bonds of addiction. Nope, we are not here to talk about detox.
Abstinence? Nope, not on the table. So while any caring person in the room, would at once declare themselves on the side of 'Harm Reduction', Fraser Health and Dr. Chan have narrowed the meaning of those words to only one component - provide addicts with all the paraphernalia they want, to keep them enslaved to life-destroying habits.
There wasn't a whisper about where the money comes from to fill those clean needles provided by our tax dollars. But we all know where the insane amount of money needed to feed the drug demon comes from.
The money comes from decent folk who work, who provide the homes and cars and possessions that druggies steal. Every mail box in my neighbourhood is pried open and emptied - to fill Fraser Health's clean needles?
Good job Fraser Health.
Gerda Peachey Abbotsford