14 Arrested During Raid at Public Housing Project 

14 Arrested During Raid at Public Housing Project 
Posted by FoM on December 06, 1998 at 12:27:12 PT
This might sound good but is it?
PATERSON -- A "quality of life" sweep by city vice and narcotics detectives at the Christopher Columbus Housing Project early Friday led to the arrests of 14 people, including one juvenile, on charges including criminal trespass and drug possession, police said.
The city's Housing Authority and Animal Control Division assisted the operation at the Matlock Street complex, which began at 8:30 a.m. and ended at 1 p.m.Officials said they planned the raid after receiving numerous complaints from residents about drug dealing, loitering, and other unlawful acts. "The people were cheering us," said police Capt. James Wittig.The Housing Authority is in the process of relocating families from the dilapidated, Sixties high-rise project under a federal housing program. About 90 families remain, however, and some say the atmosphere of lawlessness there has worsened. On Friday, police said they seized about $75 worth of heroin, $100 worth of cocaine, and $517 in cash, as well as numerous pieces of drug paraphernalia, mostly from apartments inhabited illegally by squatters.Housing Authority employees used welding equipment to seal shut apartments that had been occupied illegally, police said. In all, 130 apartments were searched in Buildings 1 and 2.Wittig said police may conduct additional sweeps as needed until the project is vacant. Housing officials say the buildings should be empty by March, with demolition scheduled for 2000. The money that is spent on policing these housing complexes could be used to develop activites, like computer training, for the young children that must live there! That will keep them busy and they won't have time to think of using drugs! That would be my way of dealing with this issue!
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Comment #2 posted by FoM on December 07, 1998 at 12:59:56 PT
We need to get to the heart of the problem!
You can tear a house down and build another and nothing is different until you get to the heart of the problem. Human respect has been on a steady decline and when respect is gone for yourself and others, nothing will fix it. The heart of the problem is that we need to allow people to be themselves and be masters of their own fate and then self respect comes, thru trial and error, which then flows to others and the healing begins! It's not what we do in private that is important but the essence of our own individual character when we are in the publics eye! 
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Comment #1 posted by Ron Bennett (UserInfo) on December 07, 1998 at 10:58:03 PT:
Why demolish the projects to begin with...
Interesting how the govt says that projects didn't work socially because people lived so close together, etc and thus feels building govt rowhomes is the way to go...I don't buy it. For if that was true, all large apartment complexes similar to the projects would be falling apart and in chaos too...and yet I don't see that happening.But in all their wisdom, the Federal govt is spending billions to demolish projects and build rowhomes (townhouses) instead. While I see their logic, it's incredible waste of money for little, if any, return.Seems to me that the values of people who live in a place is what counts, not the configuration of the building (ie. skyscrapers verses rowhomes). In Reading, PA there's several government housing tracts (Oak Brook, Glenside, etc) that are of the rowhome configuration and there's many similar problems to that in projects...but people, especially politicians, like quickfixes that feel good, but don't really solve the underlying problems.Ron
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