A Vernon business owner who’s has had trouble with street-entrenched residents, had seen positive results since hiring a private security firm.
Ed Kendall runs the Enlightened Hair and Tanning Salon next to the Gateway Shelter on 33rd Street.
He fears the problems could get worse.
“We got informed from our RCMP officer that they are dropping down hard on street people in Kelowna. So therefore. they’re coming up here and so from there it’s just going to get worse.”
Kendall says a man tried to stab him with a paring knife when he tried to get him to move on earlier this month.
“And so with summer coming I just can see it getting worse and I just feel everyone’s gotta step up and do something with these people. Like they should not be allowed to congregate, to panhandle to needle up anywhere, litter needles and that’s my biggest concern is the needles.”
Kendall has looked into moving to other sites in the city.
“And there’s the Vernon Lodge at the old beer and wine store, but in behind the fence there, behind the beer and wine store, they have a huge homeless problem there too. Like a big camp is set out there. So like, I’m just moving myself from one bad situation to another.”
Kendall says he got so frustrated, he hired a private security firm to watch over his site, and he says the company is doing an amazing job.
He’s recommending other business sign up for the service.