Letter to Editor – Doesn’t Seem Like “Ontario’s Feel Good Town”

In Letter to Editor

(Today’s Northumberland file photo)

To: Mayor Lucas Cleveland, Councillors, Cobourg Police Services, OPP Services

RE: Unsanctioned Injection Sites & Drug related behaviours (Word Doc. attached-easier read)

From: Concerned Cobourg Citizens

Date: Monday March 27, 2023

Request for Action from our elected officials, Police, and bylaw

Our families moved to Cobourg recently, as we have seen it as a safe, friendly community…and many other reasons!

We love Cobourg and are proud residents.

We have compassion and empathy toward all humans…including drug users.

Erecting injection sites in our downtown is not a good idea. We do not have a solution.

Our young ones were asking what they were doing in the tents at the Covert parking lot 2 weeks ago. How do we explain this to them?? We worry for their safety, as well as the elderly’s safety.

When intoxicated, we are not ourselves and can act in irrational, confusing, rude, intimidating, sometimes violent ways —FACTS. (As well as personal experiences and encounters).

We are concerned for our children and our elderly.

WHY do they have to be exposed to these drug induced behaviours? Many of us taxpayers are subjected to these potential behaviours with no say?

As taxpayers, who love Cobourg, we pay for police, health, Fire and EMS…we should have a well advertised Town Hall meeting on this subject (Unsanctioned Injection Sites) …there is a need for change and conversation on behalf of All of Us humans living in Cobourg.

Being subjected to the above-mentioned behaviours is not why we moved here.

This is supposed to be ‘Ontario’s Feel Good Town’. And it does not feel good or safe right now.

“We WANT to get high and not die” says masked women in Pete Fisher’s video…

The issue is the behaviours brought on by hard drug use (NOT the individual).

No discrimination here toward people…but the FRIGHTENING and UNPREDICTABLE behaviours brought on by “WANTING to get HIGH” in our public parks.

We are afraid and angry and openly voicing our feelings and legitimate concerns about behaviours brought on by illegal hard drug use, but we are unfairly treated as though we are heartless, uncaring, and discriminatory.

In Pete Fisher’s video, Tweak Easy organizer stated she is a user herself…is she high when “helping” the other users? How effective and safe is that help when the helpers are tweaked/ high and their cognition impaired?

For those who may not know the meaning of TWEAK:

“…to engage in wildly excited or agitated behavior under the influence of methamphetamine, cocaine, or other stimulant drugs: She grabbed a knife and waved it around while tweaking out on crystal meth”.

“He showed up shirtless and barefoot, tweaked out on cocaine”.

https://www.dictionary.com Tweak Definition & Meaning – Dictionary.com

We have love for all humans. The Fear is of these behaviours that have been seen to be exhibited many, many times by drug use.

These are not ‘baseless’ emotions or feelings. They are being voiced in the presence of hard facts and reality:

Needles in kids playgrounds, being screamed and yelled at, bicycles being stolen, being intimidated by being jumped toward, people jumping in front of cars. Drug seeking behaviours.

We do not think these valid fears should be described as people’s discomfort, as it was put in Cobourg Blog:

“…the presence of visible minorities, gay couples, marriages between different races or classes including Christians and Jews.”

That is an unjust tactic to mock our genuine fears, as though they were somehow comparable to racists. Shame.

AA, NA and Treatment centres are all FREE services, as well as Addictions counsellors at FourCast Addiction Services.

There is so many resources out there, provided by qualified professionals, and sober, recovering addicts.

People who love, support, guide, educate and teach abstinence. You don’t have to be alone. For most of us addicts, it is impossible to do it alone. Groups of wonderful people with empathy. There is AA and NA meetings across Cobourg 3-4 times a day…all week long.

There are those of us addicts who have gone to rehabilitation centres and have worked very hard at their sobriety and abstinence…and now have these drugs being offered right down the street? This as a potential hazard to ruining people’s hard-earned sobriety…speaking from experiences.

Potentially putting those of us who suffer from anxiety and depression, PTSD, etc. at risk…looking for a convenient/accessible way to escape from our own hellish stories.

As well, putting our sober youth at risk–who are vulnerable enough already…why would we want a tent where people are “self medicating” in very dangerous ways at our public parks? Drug dealers around, etc.? Very tempting for vulnerable people trying to stay sober.

On A Personal Note, one of us is a recently recovering addict: As an active addict what we do is constantly—24hrs a day think of how we can get our next fix. We will do anything: steal, bribe, coerce, break and enter, lie, trespass, sell our bodies for money. become violent, manipulate…WHATEVER it takes.

FACTS. HONESTY. TRUTH.

Ask an addictions therapist or go to an AA or NA meeting…they will tell you.

All day long thinking about how to feed the monster and escape from our pain.

When in treatment a fellow addict brought fentanyl in, trying to sell to the other addicts who were seriously wanting to get sober.

This person was immediately caught onto and kicked out…for jeopardizing everyone else’s efforts… Very Sad for that person, but people were exceptionally and justifiably angry…because they were serious about taking the very difficult, hard efforts to be sober.

What happened to Advertising:

DRUGS ARE BAD. DRUGS KILL. These sites promote and enable drug use. Very likely spreading this deadly crisis and unwanted behaviours to currently sober but struggling people; now we advertise and condone: TWEAK EASY…it’s a good thing!

Grant Us the Serenity to Accept the Things we cannot Change

The Courage to Change the Things We Can and

The Wisdom to know the Difference

We do not want to accept these behaviours serenely and calmly in Our Beautiful Community. We want Council, police, and bylaw to have the Courage to change the things They can.

There must be a way to protect those in the community from succumbing tragically of their addiction—but what about protecting the vulnerable in our community from relapsing into drug use, or our young and impressionable teens from easily getting addicted and falling into repeating the horrific cycle of drug use, potentially leading to their deaths? Proliferating the already existing and sad epidemic.

Bylaw violations from Friday night in Victoria Park:

BY-LAW NUMBER 019-2015: VIOLATION

…smoke ‘ or “smoking” shall mean holding or carrying a lighted cigar, cigarette, PIPE or any OTHER lighted smoking material or equipment; and

BY-LAW NUMBER 022-2016, section 4.1 (a) VIOLATION

Indulge in any disorderly, DANGEROUS, offensive, riotous, boisterous, violent, threatening, or ILLEGAL conduct or use profane or abusive language…

Thank you for taking the time to listen to our valid concerns. We look forward to your response.

Regards,

Concerned Cobourg Citizens

-Brenda Mac

Pete Fisher
Author: Pete Fisher

Has been a photojournalist for over 30-years and have been honoured to win numerous awards for photography and writing over the years. Best selling author for the book Highway of Heroes - True Patriot Love

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