OPINION: Rutland won’t change with Freedom House

Kelowna community will adapt and move forward after approval of controversial project

In the face of intense public scrutiny and pressure, credit should go to those on our city council who voted in favour of the Freedom’s Door proposal for a supportive housing project at the corner of Rutland and McCurdy Road.

Despite the fact the property is located in a residential area and close to a few schools, city council went with compassion over fear and approved the project to move forward.

It’s not an easy subject and you can’t blame people for being scared or nervous, if they live in the immediate surrounding area. But if we, as a society, are going to tackle addiction issues, we have to have facilities like Freedom House and Freeedom’s Door, where people can get clean, and reintegrate into society.

Related: Facebook reader’s comment on Freedom House

Who’s to say that a resident in Freedom House is any more dangerous than a resident in any one of the houses in the surrounding area? Or any of the houses in the mission, or Kettle Valley, or Glenmore, or Wilden? We should be teaching our kids to be smart, safe and aware no matter where they are playing.

But to shut the doors of your community to some of the people who need it most, is not the answer.

Education is a better answer. Kids should learn about addiction and how it is dealt with and what types of facilities and services are needed to help someone who has gone down the wrong path.

One resident at the public hearing stated that council’s decision will change the fate of Rutland for years to come.

If that’s the case, then so be it. If Rutland is a community that welcomes troubled people in and treats them as equals and not some piece of trash, then that change is for the better.

Rutland is an amazing place to raise a family. It is in itself stereotyped as being lower class than other areas of the city. But Rutland should be proud of what it is. It’s a family-friendly area where quality working class folks live, work and play.

And Freedom House is not going to change that one bit.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

RCMP ask public to help locate missing West Kelowna teen

Madison Loutitt was last seen July 12

Thieves on the loose in Lake Country

The RCMP is looking for thieves who stole from vehicles and a liquor store

Indie film lovers unite in Kelowna

The third annual IndieFest starts today

Cyclist attempts to break Pan-America world record

German cyclist Jonas Deichmann is travelling through B.C. to Alaska. He plans to begin his attempt on Aug. 18.

France doubles up Croatia 4-2 to win World Cup

Played in Moscow Russia, latest Fifa World Cup marks the highest scoring final since 1966

Your reviews: John Fogerty rocks the South Okanagan

Photos and reviews from fans in Penticton at John Fogerty’s concert in the SOEC

B.C. VIEWS: Making private health care illegal again

Adrian Dix battles to maintain Cuba-style medical monopoly

Almost every part of Canada’s largest national park deteriorating: federal study

Drawing on decades of research — the report lists 50 pages of citations

Activists protest outside Kinder Morgan terminal in kayaks, canoes

Tsleil-Waututh elder Ta’ah Amy George led the water ceremony from a traditional Coast Salish canoe

Canadian soccer fans brace for World Cup final between France, Croatia

First ever final for the Croatians, while it’s France’s third, going into match as betting favourite

B.C. Lions claw their way back to score 20-17 victory over Winnipeg Blue Bombers

The Bombers, who beat the Lions 41-19 last week in Edmonton, fell to 2-3 with the loss

High winds, lack of rain suggest no breaks in sight for B.C. wildfire season

There were 11 new wildfires across the province over 24 hours, BC Wildfire Service officials say

CJ’s Nightclub may be reopening in August under new ownership

Facebook posts suggest the longtime night club is set to reopen in August, also hiring staff

Most Read