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Security officers identify three downtown trash-dumpers

N1 Solutions Inc., the security company retained by the city to patrol downtown streets and alleyways, has identified three individuals responsible for fouling our streets with dumped trash bins.

“I’m very confident that we’ve been able to identify about three people that we believe are involved in these types of instances,” N1’s Sonny Spina told a meeting of the Downtown Association last night.

“These are individuals who have high needs, who need help,” Spina said.

“We have not identified any malicious intent behind that. We’ve identified people who need help.”

“I’m really thankful that, with everyone’s help we’ve been able to identify the small group of people that we think is responsible for a lot of what we were seeing.”

Now that identities of the trash-can dumpers are known, N1 has been able to call in street workers from Canadian Mental Health Association’s new Downtown Ambassadors program.

“They come very quickly when we call them. They come with a team.”

“They leave and get whatever resources they need, come back.”

“They’re doing a good job helping those folks when we are able to find them,” Spina said.

N1 has also connected the individuals with resources from the city, Sault Ste. Marie Police Service and District of Sault Ste. Marie Social Services Administration Board.

“I’m hoping that’s helping to reduce the social disorder that was happening.”

Spina also reported that not a single needle has been recovered by N1 officers in recent weeks.

Downtown Association board members heard that a significant number of downtown incidents are occurring outside the hours when N1 is patrolling.

The board voted to look at changing the patrolling hours.

“I don’t know that we need security to report that garbage has been knocked over,” said board member Nicholas Rosset.

“Is there a better benefit to the membership to have securrity patrolling during the day, to help address the stigma of the downtown being unsafe,” Rosset asked.

Of 40 reports received during the most recent security reporting period, garbage complaints were by far the largest category, accounting for 35 per cent (14 incidents) of the 40 reports.

There were two reports of loitering, two of vandalism and one of a suspicious person.

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