Some things just need to be said...

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Westend MLA Mayencourt on jailing street kids

Lorne to Tell AG jail time needed!

Yes our westend party boy is beaming over the new Safe Streets Act proclaimed a couple of days ago by the Campbell Liberals as panhandlers cold be sent to jail. Th AG seems to confirm this in today's Vancouver Sun.

Lorne Mayencourt doesn't get it, of course he is the guy that brought the legislation forward and the Liberals changed it a little and passed this unneeded law. Everything the law allows the police to do, was already available to police. The law was brought in to help Lorne in his re-election efforts, efforts that are looking dimmer now that City Counselor and former MLA Tim Stevenson is running against him.

It was another case of grandstanding by Mayencourt, to look like he is addressing an issue that has ticked off some snotty condo owners in a big way. The number of people panhandling has increased substantially in the last two years, largely attributed to government cut backs to a broad range of programs and supports in the community.

Mayencourt is being pressured by his rich condo buddies because fines were introduced and no jail time under the new Act. "People can be detained for not paying fines-- I'll make sure the Attorney-General clarifies this," Mayencourt told CKNW. Mayencourt is so bent on looking like he is addressing a problem he has lost sight of the problem. Fines given to street kids or any citizen for that matter will not lead to jail.

The fine becomes a debt, and a debt will not put you in jail, we did away with debtor prison many decades ago. Lucky for Mayencourt we did. Mayencourt declared bankruptcy some years ago. He promised to repay the debt if he became the MLA. Still waiting for an announcement on his progress to date.

Still you have to wonder about an MLA that fails to look at why someone panhandles, why there are double the people on the streets in two years? Lets put them jail he says. Great grandstanding but disingenuis on his and the AG's part to suggest a pandhandler will end up in jail for pandhandling.