Pubdate: Thu, 06 Feb 2003
Source: Hope Standard (CN BC)
Copyright: 2003 Hope Standard
Author: Anna Gladue


Dear Editor: The Hope Standard

Given that shoplifting in Canada is a $10 billion annual problem, one 
wonders why the nine businesses along Wallace between Fourth and Fifth 
Avenues have been singled out by this publication. It is frustrating for a 
business owner on this block, who goes out of her way to bring positive 
energy and a healthy business environment to the area, to read 
sensationalist drivel about urinating street people and rampant drug use.

Let's see if we can set aside the diatribe long enough to see what's really 
going on in this half of Hope. First we have Hope Community Services and 
Thrift shop. Not everyone is lucky enough to have jobs and homes in these 
frigid political and economic times, but I don't think these people are 
urinating in the street on a daily basis, they need help and thankfully 
this organization is there to provide it. Further west you find a dollar 
store and a consignment clothing store, where young families buy clothes 
and pencil crayons for their kids, the proprietors are friendly and the 
goods sold at very reasonable prices.

Yet further and you find a computer store where the door is always open and 
even the most technologically illiterate can learn to use a computer and 
perhaps better themselves on the Internet. What about the toy store filled 
with birthday presents and the pet food store with the friendly cat and 
reasonable prices on quality feed for all animals? And of course the 
incense and gift shop who invited the art community to paint a wonderful 
mural for the whole town to enjoy.

The truth about running a business is that people treat you the way you 
treat them. If you jack up your prices and try to gouge for every penny, 
then your patrons are going to behave accordingly. If you sell 
paraphernalia that encourages the use of drugs, it seems that you would 
expect to attract drug users and thieves to your business.

The Vancouver east side is a very complicated and dangerous area. No 
reasonable comparison could possibly be drawn to this or any other area in 
the town of Hope. There are no bars on our windows, we don't have guns 
behind the counters and contrary to the irresponsible reporting of this 
publication, there is not a greater problem with petty crime then there is 
in the rest of Hope, or Canada for that matter.

There are only nine businesses along in the area in question, in the 
future; it would be appreciated if the Hope Standard could be bothered to 
ask the opinions of more than one or two of them before painting the entire 
block with such a dark and erroneous brush.

Scents-erely Anna Gladue Anna's Incense Hope, BC
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