Pubdate: Fri, 17 Dec 2004
Source: Kelowna Capital News (CN BC)
Copyright: 2004, West Partners Publishing Ltd.
Author: Tom


To the editor:

I would like to clarify some remarks attributed to a recent speech I
gave at Crossroads Treatment Centre Society, referred to in the
article, Crossroads Detox May Face Closure (Dec. 10 Capital News).

Mr. Murray Ramsden paraphrased me to the writer saying: "It wasn't
necessarily coming back to a place like Crossroads, it was being able
to phone that one person who understood him." That is not what I said.

I clearly stated, "I did come back to Kelowna because I did have one
person here that believed" in me.

However. that person has worked for Crossroads for many years. He
embodies what Crossroads stands for, professionals who make a
difference in the lives of addicts. I came to Crossroads because I
knew the counsellor, I knew the integrity of the place and its
programs and I knew the safe environment that their Supportive Living
program could offer me.

As a man severely addicted to cocaine and heroin, I lived on the
street, did crime, was sent to jail. I was a general parasite on
society. I can tell you Crossroads offered me a safe environment where
I could see my situation with clarity and safety. I could make
informed life changing decisions with the help of educated, caring

To suggest that I did not need Crossroads and all it has to offer to
get clean is simply reckless reporting. Had the reporter in question
actually stayed to hear my speech, he would have not needed to quote
Mr. Ramsden on its content and would have fully understood the impact
that Crossroads, not just the one mentioned counsellor, has had on my

If anyone really wants to know if there is a better model of recovery
out there than what is being offered at Crossroads, I would have to
say no. Crossroads saved my life. And to suggest that we, as a
community do not need Crossroads is simply bad politics.

Today, I am clean and employed and working towards the completion of
my apprenticeship as a chef. I am honoured and grateful to be a
contributing member of society today.

I hope this alleviates Mr. Ramsden's fears about whether or not the
present funding at Crossroads is money well spent.


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