Valleyview II tenants urge public activism

Dear Editor

It’s been almost two-years since the media first reported on the shenanigans here at Valleyview Tower II. Nothing has improved, it’s gotten worse. Myself and many others have made dozens of calls to management and senior staff. All have fallen on deaf ears.

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Meanwhile, a palatial new office is being built at Railway Avenue and 104th Street, at what expense, away from all the problems at the currently “free” office at Tower II.

The taxpayers of both Battleford and North Battleford should brace themselves for a tax increase this year. Both communities are part owners in the Battlefords Housing Authority. That puts Battleford and North Battleford taxpayers on the hook for a portion of Housing Authority losses. A large new office building, empty suites vacated by discouraged seniors, repairs to units and common spaces damaged by partying tenants and “visitors,” management incompetence and poor decisions all cost money.

After the recent media revelations, the Housing Authority did bring in a local security firm, which improved things for the tenants. The local security guard makes full daily written reports, takes pictures, stops unauthorized visitors from entering the buildings, enforces the masking rule, stops parties and calls the police when necessary. But now we now learn that our competent, professional local security firm is being replaced by an out-of-town company.

Late last week a number of the worst offending tenants were handed eviction notices. Thank you to whichever politician(s) have finally made someone do their job.

Now get down to the most important work. Remove any staff, management or board members that do not want to do their jobs.

All of the terrible things and disgusting behaviours that have happened since the current manager was hired by the local board are results of poor decisions, and the local board refuses to accept responsibility or hold their general manager accountable for his actions or failure to act.

The various levels of government and the people of this community count on local boards to do their jobs. More importantly, the senior citizens who have called this home since the early 1980s also deserve some compassion, empathy, respect and protection.

I am not suggesting for one minute that we turn our backs on the unfortunate individuals who have received most of the condemnation and criticism in this matter. They, too, deserve to have their needs met and to be treated with respect. I am simply saying not here. You cannot take a 99-suite senior’s facility and suddenly overwhelm it with people with whom they have nothing in common, some of whom they are legitimately fearful, as evidenced by crimes that have occurred, including a stabbing.

I beg the people of the Battlefords to write letters, call their mayor, Premier Scott Moe, Housing Minister Lori Carr and MLA Jeremy Cockrill. Ask them who is going to pay for this. Ask them what they plan on doing. I am certain this will not go away. If things continue as they are it will only get worse.

Maxine Finch

Tenant, Valley View Tower II

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