Street crime hurts Vernon businesses

Forum tackles homelessness, crime and addiction in Vernon
Watch Above: Vernon businesses speak out about impacts of crime, homelessness and addiction.

Public prostitution, defecation and drug use. Thefts and aggressive behaviours.

Those were among the concerns raised Thursday night at a Town Hall in Vernon hosted by the Activate Safety Task Force.

It was formed by city council in response to concerns raised by members of Vernon’s business community.

About 160 people attended the forum, advising task force members of the impact of anti-social behaviours on their businesses and customers.

“I think it’s important that Vernon has this difficult conversation about the impact of some members of the street entrenched population,” said Darrin Taylor, Chair of the task force.

“The business community is clearly concerned about a growing problem and ignoring it or pretending it doesn’t exist simply isn’t an option.”

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The task force recommendations for possible solutions are expected to be presented to city council in July.