Re: "City saw huge uptick in vandalism," The Gazette, Nov. 3.
In the article detailing the increase in vandalism activity, I noticed one very key point that was missing for possible mitigation. Why was there no mention of re-establishing a youth centre like the one that was in Grandin Mall?
Being a kid in St. Albert myself, I know many of my peers relied on the youth centre for companionship, activities, and resources to deal with a life that wasn't always rosy. We know, statistically, that since the pandemic, family violence has increased in general, and for a kid stuck in a violent home situation, there's not much to rely on these days with cuts to funding and a sharp decrease in in-person services.
Vandalism is not a problem that needs an increase in surveillance. It's indicative of a need for kids in the city to have something to do, and somewhere to go that has positive and understanding leaders for those who have it bad.
I know adults don't like hearing about child abuse, but make no mistake, it happens, and its effects are detrimental to everyone. Give the kids something to do that they don't have to pay for, and I'm positive that property destruction would see a decrease.
Ciara Fraser, St. Albert