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Dryden is not immune to the social issues that plague communities across the country. Dryden is dealing with a homelessness situation, mental health issues and drug addiction.
These were the realities laid out by Ann Tkachyk to the Rotary Club of Dryden last week. Tkachyk spoke to the club on behalf of the Dryden Area Risk Response Team (DARRT) and she thought it was important to address them about the realities in the city.
“I think it’s a great opportunity to include organizations that may not recognize the challenges that are being faced in Dryden. The challenges that are being faced by so many people that are separated from other mainstream community,” said Tkachyk.
“Working front line policing for as long as I have been working front line policing we’ve come to the realization in policing, even right up to the provincial level realizes, these social disorder issues that are effecting police, ambulance, hospitals, emergency rooms, mental health and addictions, need to be addressed in a different manner than what we did in the past and it needs that partnership, it needs people to work together to address those issues with what you have in your community.”
Recently, through support from the Ministry of Housing, the Kenora District Services Board (KDSB) has begun conducting its first Period Prevalence Count (PPC) of homelessness in each of the nine municipalities of the Kenora District.
The results of this project will help Ontario and local governments to better understand the scale and nature of homelessness in order to prevent and reduce it proactively. Tkachyk believes the count will help to recognize the needs in the community and cited homelessness can count as someone trying to go to school who is living on friend’s couches.
“Our community has to come together and address the issues with the services and the resources that we have,” said Tkachyk.
“Not one of our major concerns can be dealt with by one agency; it’s not solely the responsibility of KDSB to deal with homelessness, it’s not solely the responsibility of Dryden Mental Health and Addictions to deal with mental health and addictions, it’s everybody, we all have to come together and that’s the number one goal of DAART.”