Getting to the Harsh Realities in Thunder Bay

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View of Lake Superior from Courthouse Hotel
View of Lake Superior from Hill at the Courthouse Hotel on May 15, 2022

Thunder Bay Should Set a Goal of Being the Addiction Treatment Capital of North America

THUNDER BAY – OPINION – Thunder Bay has problems related to addiction. From cocaine to alcohol the impact of addictions hits hard on our city.

The addiction to illicit drugs have fuelled the influx of criminal gangs from Toronto who see the local market as very profitable.

The results are overdoses, murders, assaults, and way more family strife than anyone will admit.

Some of that is in how crime is often reported. Some is because sadly there are too many who don’t see enough options in life other than falling prey to some of these gangsters who are so ready to pounce on them.

Solutions are seen often as putting together committees to talk about finding solutions.

Here is a solution

The City of Thunder Bay should set a goal of becoming North America’s leading centre for addiction treatment. Our city could be on the leading edge of solving what is one of the biggest causes of strife in the lives of families in North America.

Often it appears that instead of working toward solutions, many are sadly content to push the problem aside. After all, who cares? Right? Its not your friend or family who is being impacted?

Not true.

The fact is the issues of addiction impact everyone in Thunder Bay.

We all pay a price.

Crime impacts people when people break into vehicles looking for money or things to steal and sell.

Families suffer when loved ones overdose.

Children suffer when a parent with addiction issues spends money on that addiction instead of on food, and necessities. Our community in helping has seen increased demand at the food bank and the Dew Drop Inn. Those amazing organizations are doing great work and seem sometimes to be overwhelmed.

Tax dollars and time spent by Thunder Bay Police and the courts is hard to realistically measure. The depth of the problem can be seen in that the Thunder Bay District Jail is full to capacity and beyond.

The solution of a new modern jail is not going to solve the problem of the crime that is generated as a result of addiction issues.

The solution is in admitting the depth of the problem, and then finding solutions.

Speaking to a member of Thunder Bay City Council earlier this week, the comment was there is way too much talk and not enough action.

We agree.

Thunder Bay should set a goal of becoming the addiction treatment capital of North America.

James Murray