Letters to the Editor

Put halfway house in industrial area

It is with utter amazement that I have to sit down and write this letter, and yet, here I am.

My mother, young sister and I, live in easy walking distance from the Peasley Canyon site that the the state Department of Social and Health Services has proposed to build a secure community transition facility. Why anyone would waste their breath by calling this proposed facility “secure” is incredible to me. Along with thousands of others, my family and I would be negatively affected if this site is chosen.

Due to the fact that Level 3 sex offenders are deemed “highly likely to reoffend,” I find it extremely irresponsible for the residential neighborhood of Peasley Canyon to even be considered. A tracking bracelet would monitor these sexually violent predators, but all they would need to do is wrap aluminum foil around the device to become instantly “invisible” to the monitoring service.

Then consider the fact that there are 34 children in the homes right next to the Peasley Canyon property (within 600 feet), a homeschool and outdoor playground just steps away. How could anyone think that freeing a fox right next to a chicken coop is a good idea?

What recommendations do I have to solve this problem? This transition facility needs to be located in an industrial area. First of all, an industrial area offers these sex-offenders easier access to jobs, instead of women and children. They would also have public transportation to get to work and counseling services. If the cost of the site becomes a priority we have to ask ourselves, which is more valuable –– the dollars that might be saved in the beginning by purchasing a lot in a residential neighborhood, or the safety and life of my younger sister, or my mother, or any of our neighbors? As these sex offenders come and go from the facility on a daily basis, it would be much better for them to see men driving forklifts, rather than a girl walking to her school bus stop. And when they get the desire to reoffend, it would be significantly better for them to come upon a man loading his delivery truck, than a girl playing on her swing set.

I would think that doing the right thing would be guidance enough for all the people who have power in this selection process. But in case that isn’t enough. I believe I need to issue a reminder: All the people who live in the Peasley Canyon area, their family, and their friends, will remember the names of those legislators and public servants who did not take a stand against the Peasley Canyon site and protect their constituents.

We will continue to protect our rights, and will fight the placement of this facility in our neighborhood.

Bridget Dohse

Auburn

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