We’re all helping to kill the homeless

We’re all helping to kill the homeless

Who is killing the homeless in Toronto? Everybody.

We do it through bad government policies resulting in misused and misplaced scarce resources, public apathy, the law, and decisions made by the homeless themselves.

Four people died from the cold on the streets of Toronto in the first few weeks of January.

The instant reaction from city government was to put more resources into opening shelter spaces, including renting hotel rooms.

There would be no need to scramble for funding for such a measure if the provincial government was not wasting billions of dollars “protecting” us from the heat with its Green Energy Act. We’ve known this for a long time.

In 2013, as the Fraser Institute reported, “The Auditor General of Ontario estimates that the province has already lost close to $2 billion on surplus wind exports, and figures from the electricity grid operator show the ongoing losses are $200 million annually.”

Yet the Ontario Liberals are planning to increase the number of wind turbines in the province.

They hook on to “alarming statistics” such as the recent headline 2014 was the warmest year on record.

But as Tom Harris of the skeptical International Climate Science Coalition noted in the Toronto Sun, “the record for the year was set by four one-hundredths of a degree Celsius … but the uncertainty factor in this temperature statistic is nine one-hundredths of a degree.”

That’s hardly worth wasting billions of dollars trying to “cool” the planet. We are focused on the wrong problem.

What about the law?

When one man died at a bus shelter, severely under-dressed for the severe cold, many people self-righteously said things like, “Someone saw that man, and yet did nothing.”

Perhaps, but if a homeless person refuses assistance from the public or the police, even if it is obvious to everyone but the homeless person that he or she needs help, can anything be done legally to help them?

Declaring the person mentally incompetent in order to compel them to receive care is occasionally used, but it’s a difficult process.

So, do we have a Charter right to be left alone, even in a t-shirt and jeans on a bitterly cold night?

Criminal lawyer Ed Prutschi of Crimlawcanada.com says: “Short of someone in the throes of active self-harm, where medical authorities might intervene to prevent suicide, people have the autonomy and right to choose severe discomfort and even danger by refusing to go accept help at a shelter. This is particularly complicated by the claims of many homeless people that the shelters themselves are dangerous places and hence they’d prefer to take their chances on the street.”

What kills homeless people other than the cold?

Substance abuse and suicide due to mental health issues, accidents and, like the rest of us, heart disease and cancer.

Improved services for those issues would take a giant step forward with even half of that $200 million annually we are wasting on a questionable quest to “save the planet”.

What about public apathy?

Governments jump in to provide temporary solutions such as more shelters when it is cold in order to lull us into thinking they care and are “on it.” And we move on.

So what is the priority for an already over-taxed public and for elected officials?

If it’s wind turbines, perhaps more dead homeless people is the price we are willing to pay.

https://www.torontosun.com/2015/01/26/were-all-helping-to-kill-the-homeless

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Edward Prutschi is an excellent criminal lawyer. He took a complex financial crime case where I was facing a long term jail sentence and was able to present a case where the judge acquitted me on all charges. I dealt with two other lawyers who were on record for my file before Edward came on board. With Edward, I found he was always responsive and always willing to listen. He presented a complex case over 5 weeks and was quick on his feet for every twist and turn during the trial. He would be up late the night before witness examination exchanging emails due to new email evidence I was sending him. He would go out of his way to visit potential expert witnesses. He presented a united and coherent defense to the Judge which in the end resulted in my acquittal and the co-accused. With his leading media expertise and being a guest columnist in the Toronto Sun, he wrote an article in defense of my acquittal for those who were questioning the Judge’s decision.
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An excellent lawyer. Edward Prutschi is thorough, non-judgmental and effective. He returns calls quickly and handles everything with a personal touch that puts you immediately at ease. I would highly recommend him
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Edward Prutschi is very professional and very helpful. Very patiently, Mr. Prutschi offered me so many detailed responses to my questions. If you need the best criminal lawyer, Mr. Prutschi is the best of the best! Thank you for your efforts, Mr. Prutschi!Cristina F.
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14:16 11 Jun 13
Ed Prutschi has always been a highly ethical, hard working professional criminal lawyer who gets results for his clients at all times. Our agency, Just For Today Harm Reduction Services, has worked with Ed for nearly ten years and all of our clients feel, as we do, that they have been well served by an empathetic lawyer who places his clients first and foremost.
David Levy
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21:20 23 May 13
Ed Prutschi is an excellent criminal lawyer. His command of the law and his experience in the Courtroom make him a stellar advocate in any criminal matter. I refer clients to Ed without hesitation because I know they will receive the zealous advocacy they want.
Sharon Shore
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18:16 15 Mar 13
Ed is an excellent criminal lawyer. He is very professional, extremely responsive and gets good results for my clients. I never hesitate in referring clients to him. Ed has an intimate understanding of how different areas of law intersect with and affect the criminal proceedings. Ed is also a great resource for other lawyers. He is constantly reporting on new case law, and is very knowledgable about cutting edge areas of law.
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Stuart Rudner
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00:03 12 Feb 13
I have known Ed Prutschi since we were in law school together. When I am asked for a great criminal lawyer, I think of Ed because he is well-known for his advocacy and effectiveness in representing his clients’ interests. Ed demonstrates his vast knowledge through his writing and social media efforts, and his record of success demonstrates that he understands what his clients need and the strategies necessary to achieve it. In addition to knowledge and strategy, Ed brings with him a personality that makes people comfortable at very difficult times in their lives. I have referred people to Ed in the past and have never had any complaints, which is important to me. When I refer someone to another lawyer, I never want to hear that the lawyer was unresponsive or did a poor job. Ed always makes me look good.
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