As Kelowna is about to lose one of its own important addiction services, a B.C. Crown corporation is mismanaging its own addicts.
Crossroads Recovery Centre announced this week it is closing its doors and will no longer offer alcohol and drug counselling and detox programs. It has simply run out of funding.
Over at B.C. Lotteries, the issue is also about money - and who it belongs to.
In a classic case of "the house always wins," British Columbia Lottery Corp. is being sued by problem gamblers who allege Lotteries withheld their winnings because they were enrolled in a voluntary program that should have excluded them from gambling at casinos.
Lotteries should anticipate that gambling addicts will relapse, and that's just what Michael Lee and Hamidreza Haghdust did.
When they won a combined $77,000, Lotteries more or less said, "Too bad, you're not supposed to be here anyway."
Except that the B.C. Supreme Court has now ruled their cases are worthy of a class-action lawsuit. That leads us to believe there must be many other winners Lotteries has refused to pay out.
The men may well have voluntarily signed exclusion forms, but at the time they did so, the paperwork made no mention that any winnings would be forfeited.
Their lawyer claims the program is flawed because it allowed his clients to lose, but never win. Ya think?
Talk about the deck being stacked against you. Taking advantage of people's addictions is just plain wrong.
- Managing Editor