There goes the neighbourhood

A local religious cult is about to open a halfway house for substance abusers and ex-offenders round the corner from us. Oh well, there goes the neighbourhood.

Don’t get me wrong, because I have no problem with winos, druggies and petty thieves. I’ve lived amongst folk like that most of my life, and unlike, say, estate agents, accountants and other white collar criminals most are too inept to do much damage. It’s having the area over-run by career evangelicals that I object to.

I have it on good authority that the couple fronting the con are a notorious pair of bible bandits from Douglas, who will be renting out their own property and live all expenses paid in this one under the pretence of “supervising” it. But what I want to know is who protects the vulnerable from these vultures? For example, I gather they will trouser a percentage of their reluctant tenants’ benefits payments, having persuaded government that such innocents can’t be trusted with hard cash.

Since they got involved in an equally poorly thought through scheme in Douglas, re-offending rates have gone through the roof. The only reason the public doesn’t know of this is that the offenders (by which I mean the Christian pseudo-charity behind it and not decent ordinary burglars) have been entrusted with monitoring their own activities, with predictable results (or gaps therein).

Sadly, this is now the local norm in what passes for social services. When key civil servants and the worst god-bothering cults are in cahoots, is it any wonder that common decency is so rare?


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