This letter is in regards to the short-sightedness of building a prison for quick jobs and financial gain.
My name is Nicola. My husband and I moved to Penticton three years ago, a dream to enjoy the great outdoor recreation and great climate of the area. It has not been easy and it won’t be for some time, battling for jobs and working hard to be able to stay and begin to raise a family. People who put up this fight care and love this place. Encouraging quick jobs and short-term gain will not strengthen the community, and what model is this to the children and youth who grow up here?
Another concern are the sites suggested. My husband and I are educators and work daily with the precious, frustrating, fabulous and vulnerable children of Penticton. All suggested sites are alarmingly close to elementary, middle and high schools.
People have suggested that the criminals housed here would be the “petty kind,” not ones convicted of crimes against children. I feel as though people do not see how youth are influenced by the negative energy that will be around them, the petty crime that is the gateway for most individuals. Students will be surrounded by that, and the attitude that those crimes are petty or dismissive goes against school foundations.
The sites also encroach upon natural areas that help create the active, healthy lifestyle we moved here to enjoy. The environmental impact would be devastating and force many users to build trails and impact more habitat close to the city. I for one would no longer feel safe hiking or biking on Campbell Mountain or up the Carmi.
Funny how I am less scared of bears and cougars than of the choices that humans make. Whether the choices impact a community or myself and family if I meet them in a remote place. We teach children to be responsible for their actions and be accountable, please set an example to children and show forethought to the idea of and where a prison goes.
I appreciate the forum and opportunity to voice my opinion.