Pubdate: Sat, 08 Jul 2006
Source: London Free Press (CN ON)
Copyright: 2006 The London Free Press
Author: Patrick Maloney, Free Press Reporter
Bookmark: (Methadone)


Visiting Ontario PC leader wonders why a methadone clinic is near a
high school.

If John Tory has his way, the methadone clinic that so vexes many in
downtown London's Old East Village would likely be moved.

The Ontario opposition leader, who has made law and order a major part
of his Conservative party's agenda, criticized the clinic's location
yesterday during a visit with police Chief Murray Faulkner.

"It's across the street from a high school, which I find very
curious," said Tory, who took over as Conservative leader in 2004,
referring to H. B. Beal secondary school.

"We need to have methadone clinics in big cities but . . . I think it
might well be somewhere else better located."

Blitzing Ontario communities, Tory was in London yesterday to meet
Faulkner and take a walking tour of a downtown intersection police
have targeted in the past as a drug-dealing hub.

While the corner of Dundas and Richmond streets was quiet during
yesterday's stroll, Tory pledged to return at a busier time for a
police ride-along.

Tory also took aim at Premier Dalton McGuinty.

"I don't know if Mr. McGuinty (has) ever come to London (specifically)
to look at crime," said Tory, who demonstrated a working knowledge of
the city's crime figures -- rare for a Toronto-based politician.

"(Voters) can take some heart from the fact that I'm here. I've spoken
up continually and consistently since I became the leader of the party
and before that about the level of crime."

He said he considers drugs the root of much of Ontario's community

The tour didn't last long.

Tory and Faulkner only visited the nearby offices of MainStreet London
before parting. Faulkner noted the meeting was in no way an
endorsement of the Tories over any other political party.

"I've met with NDPs, I've met with (Liberals)," he said. "I'm happy
when, regardless of the party, (a politician) wants to meet and
discuss the issues that our men and women face on the streets."
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