A lot of questions need the answers

A lot of questions need the answers

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Tonight’s forum on the correctional centre will hopefully answer a lot of people’s questions and concerns.

For example, how many employment positions will actually be filled by Oliver residents? And what safeguards are in place to prevent prisoners from escaping?

We’d like to know what type of inmates will be held here. Can we expect murderers, rapists and other dangerous offenders? Or will they be far less dangerous?

There has been a lot of talk lately about how the prison will bring millions of dollars in economic benefits to the South Okanagan. Jobs galore. Spinoffs galore . . . a lot of galore. But there’s always another side.

You can expect prison officials to discuss the many benefits of the new facility. But you won’t likely hear many negatives, such as the drug trade inside the jail, or the stigma attached to becoming a “prison town.”

It would be interesting to find out if the tourism trade will suffer as a result.

The correctional centre will no doubt positively impact the economy, but at what expense? These are the questions that must be answered.

Although the chance of an inmate escaping will be remote, the thought of one running loose in the community is unnerving.

Another question to ask is what type of rehabilitation programs will be in place for inmates. This will be key in helping transform the wayward into law-abiding citizens, because everyone deserves a chance to turn his life around.

It is reported that Oliver will need a full-time police officer to meet the prison’s needs (dealing with conflict within those walls).

The Town has been assured that it will have all of the resources it needs when the facility opens. But like the mayor says, we need more police resources now, not in 2016.

The fact is more lawbreakers will be coming to our hamlet to reside. Sorry, but we already have enough thugs in our community. One thing is for sure: they won’t have far to go to be incarcerated for their next crime against society.

 

Lyonel Doherty

Editor

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