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Letters, April 11

Letters to the editor are submitted by Mail Tribune readers, and do not reflect the opinions of the newspaper.

Fires are the problem

The problem the city should be attacking isn’t camping — it’s fires. An open flame on municipal property should be banned.

Instead of sending police cars out to tear down homeless camps, send fire trucks out to throughly extinguish the fire with high-pressure hoses. The penalty for violation could be reimbursement of fire extinguishment costs and/or permanent exclusion.

A side benefit maybe a decrease in homeless campers tired of cold food and soggy campsites.

Stephen Brown

Medford

Just a thought

When I was a kid my family was in the middle of the Depression. My dad was out of work and times were tough.

Along came the WPA (the Works Progress Administration), and for the first time, my dad found a job. He was so proud! Many of our neighbors were just as lucky. I even took piano lessons from a WPA teacher!

We also knew that the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps) was training young volunteers how to build bridges and dams and roads and all kinds of cool stuff in forests and in National and State Parks. They even supplied them with evening educational classes.

Please understand, I am not some kind of socialist/communist/progressive wacko, but every day on TV we hear about lack of jobs for the homeless and the sorry state of our roads and bridges and dams. Question: Instead of just building homeless shelters, wouldn’t it be more economical for the state of Oregon to establish its own version of the WPA and/or CCC and offer our homeless the opportunity to gain some respectability by providing meaningful jobs? I am aware that mental problems are another issue but this is just a thought.

Bob Shepard

Medford

Thanks for health care support

I’d like to thank Sen. Ron Wyden for supporting the American Rescue Act that expanded the availability and affordability of health care to millions of Americans during this pandemic.

I’m an American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network volunteer and a cancer caregiver. I know the importance of health coverage, especially during a public health crisis. Countless people have lost their jobs and employer-sponsored health insurance. Others struggle to afford their premiums due to lost income. This help from the federal government could be lifesaving.

Thanks to this law, people can enroll in health insurance through the marketplace and receive subsidies to cover the cost. These plans will offer coverage for pre-existing conditions, prescription drugs and cancer screenings, which is especially important as many Americans have skipped or been unable to get screened and now need care. People who have lost their jobs but want to keep their employer plan can get subsidies to cover their entire premiums—especially relevant as many cancer patients have already met their deductibles and out-of-pocket costs early in the year.

It’s essential to ensure people have good health coverage to recover from this pandemic. I’m glad Sen. Wyden has made it a priority.

Debi Svaren

Central Point