Play the Soundslides to hear Don Rogers, and see photos of the area.
Empty beer cans, boxes, articles of clothing, old furniture — the bush off the bike path in the Hamilton Heights area in Happy Valley-Goose Bay, looks like a dump. Only it isn't.
RCMP Staff Sgt. Don Rogers — the detachment's new commander recently took Labrador Morning's Jay Legere on a tour of the area by Hamilton River Road just off Kelland Drive, and it's clear to Rogers what's going on.
"It's very obvious that people come here and consume alcohol. It's illegal to do so. It's not a designated place that you can do that, which is going to be a bar or a beer garden or what not, It's a public place. Yeah, it's an issue,' Roger says.
"There's a variety of different people that regularly come to the attention of the police, and there's some of the people, not all of them, but it's a fairly consistent group of individuals."
Rogers wants to see an end to the drinking — and the littering. He says as soon as the nice weather comes in, everybody heads outside, and the partying begins.
The police plan to do more bike patrols — it's recently purchased a second bike — and foot patrols. They've also accepted an non-aboriginal board of director's position at the Labrador Friendship Centre
Rogers also says an officer has been assigned to build a relationship, with business owners and the public, and form a community forum — not to just to hear the problems, but to hear how they think those problems can be resolved.
"This has been going on for a long time here, not just one year or two years or five years or ten years, it's been going on for a long,long time … And it's going to take a long, long time to resolve it. Hopefully we can come up with something better than just a bandaid,"
"I want business owners if they're being bothered by persons who are intoxicated, I want them to call the police, and we will respond, we will come and we will take whatever action we can," he said. "But again, much of this is beyond the control of the police to control. It's a problem that takes an entire community to solve.