Date: Tue, 10 Jan 2006 16:47:05 -0500 (EST)
From: “Gregory Fowler”
Subject: Failure to Communicate
To: “Sandy White”
CC: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, John.Wilsons@corusent.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
With respect to the issue of Needle Disposal Bins.
Since there’s been no response from Mr. Irwin at the Central Library, or from anyone at the London Middlesex Health Unit, or from Councillor Eagle, or from Councillor Tranquilli …
and as I’ve expressed to you before, this is terrible behaviour on the part of people who are paid out of the public purse…
Please visit my web blog and review my letters of 2006/01/07 which you will find in the “Library Services” archive.
Perhaps you are in a better position to make inquiries and to get answers than what I am.
Mr. Greg Fowler
smail: 962 Eagle Crescent; London, Ontario; N5Z 3H7
phone: (519) 649-0500
Date: Sat, 7 Jan 2006 07:51:27 -0500 (EST)
From: “Gregory Fowler”
Subject: Fwd: Info Request – Needle Disposal
To: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
CC: email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org
With respect to “the wisdom of placing needle dispenser bins in the washrooms at London’s Central Library on Dundas Street.”
I agree with you that nobody has a “right” to do drugs in the library. And I suppose I have some concern that the presence of dispenser bins might attract persons with serious drug addictions and behavioural problems to the library who otherwise would not be there.
My biggest concern though, is for the safety of library workers. And my presumption is that the bins will result in greater safety for those workers, even if they don’t resolve the problem of unsafe disposal in it’s entirety.
Your suggestion that “accommodating drug users is driving away legitimate patrons” would have been easier to accept if you had prefixed the word “patrons” with a qualifier, such as “some.” I am the organizer of the Forest City Backgammon Club, which conducts it’s meetings 6-9pm on Thursday evenings on the Central Library’s 3rd floor. Even after polling some of the membership on this issue, I have received no expressions of concern about the issue.
As a father and a grandfather, I think that your valid concern for the safety of children (“do you really want your children to visit a library where addicts are shooting up in the washroom?”) might better have been accompanied by a reminder that things like drug use, sexual predators, etc. are a larger societal problem than at this one location, and that children should never be left unattended in public washrooms.
Given my public advocacy over the past decade for increased budgets for police and other essential services, I’m a bit uncomfortable with the quote attributed to Mr. Irwin that “London police’s foot patrol officers regularly tour the library.”
I don’t believe that the police need to attend at the library regularly. But what concerns me about the quote is that many people will misinterpret “regularly” and come to the impression that the police are there (or anyplace else) frequently. And that will simply compound the folly of the notion that we can continue to exert pressure on the police budget without negative consequeces.
What interests me most about this issue, is whether or not the Library Board made it’s decision in isolation, or if it consulted with other community stakeholders first? Is there a broader approach to the problem of needle disposal, with leadership coming from Council and the Health Unit?