Psychiatric proposal raises fears
No information given on psychiatric home, says neighbor

by Mark Sproxton
Northern News Services

NNSL (Mar 26/97) - Tears of concern flowed at city council Monday night.

"Are pedophiles or sexual offenders living next door to me and my children?" asked an emotional Wendy Hutchinson.

"This is not a case of NIMBY -- not in my back yard -- but what are you putting in my back yard? There is not enough information available," said the Finlayson Drive North resident.

Hutchinson said she is concerned she has no information regarding the proposed psychiatric group home next door to her at 6217 Finlayson.

The territorial government's department of Public Works and Services, in conjunction with Health and Social Services, applied to council for a development permit for a psychiatric boarding home at the address.

The home would have up to four clients in crisis or in transition and would live in the neighborhood for up to six months, according to a summary of the city development committee report. The home would be supervised around the clock by two qualified personnel.

But just as the council meeting was to start, Gerry Borschneck, landlord of the home where the development has been proposed, asked discussion to be deferred as the address on the application was wrong.

Hutchinson said while she agrees with the principle of integrating people back into the community, neighbors should be informed of the possible development first.

The only reason she knew the topic was up for discussion Monday was a neighbor informed her of a small article in last week's Yellowknifer, she said.

Bob McKinnon, director of planning and lands, said the city is not allowed to advertise a pending proposal. Advertising can only take place once council makes a decision to approve or deny the application, he said.

The application will be discussed by council at its next meeting.