The intensive police surveillance left its mark on the Sörnäinen area: drug use spread to an increasingly wider area.
A group of men drink alcohol at the intersection of Pengerpolu and Helsinginkatu. At the same time, the police car turns onto the neighboring Vaasanpuistikki, or Piritori.
The cops get out of their car, walk up to the men and pour their drinks away. One of the men is ordered to leave and soon walks away.
We are an employee of the A-klinikkasäätiö facing substance abuse Kajsa Santonen and the boss of the upcoming work Have a shot of Dal Mason along with their tour in the Kurvi area. Their mission is to reduce the harm caused by drug use.
Police carried out a three-week power monitoring period in the Kurvi area in May–June, which focused especially on the surroundings of Vaasanpuistiko, known as Piritori. The police said that they had removed a couple of hundred drug users from Kurvi in the early days of power monitoring.
Read more: The consequences of police surveillance are already visible on the streets of Sörnäis
Mild effects caused by drug use, such as dirty tools found on the ground, have partially spread from Piritori to a wider area in the direction of Dallapén and Katri Vala parks.
There are plenty of unhealthy people using narcotics in the Kurvi area.
Read more: The infamous Kurvi is once again the “wild west” – This is how everyday life goes after the end of police surveillance
We’re walking To Dallapénpuisto. The door of one of the park’s public restrooms has been broken and won’t open. Santonen peeks into the other toilet. Nothing is found there this time.
The park is quiet from the early afternoon. On the steps of the Harju youth hall, there has just been a picnic in the D-station park, which meets once a week and is open to everyone. There are no indications of disorderly behavior in the park.
There are several drug syringes in Pusiko near Aleksis Kive katu. Dal Maso puts on protective gloves and collects them.
Aleksis kiven katu a few women sell sex.
“Many women would rather sell sex than pimp,” says Dal Maso
A homeless 37-year-old woman selling sex on the street introduces herself As Susanna. He recognizes Santosen and Dal Mason.
A few days ago, a woman had her entire possessions stolen in a public restroom, starting with sunglasses and clothes.
“The name of the city should be Hellsinki with two l’s. We hit each other and hit and kick,” says Susanna.
“The mood has only worsened. I’m so angry, but I turn my bad feeling into a joke.”
Inspector Katja Nissinen The Helsinki police say that the police have no plans for new surveillance periods in the Kurvi area.
Next, the police will work together with the residents and various substance abusers to ensure that the disorders and crimes caused by substance use decrease in the area in the longer term.
“If we don’t succeed and the situation gets to the point where we have to increase supervision, then we will increase it.”
The working group of the police and substance abusers met for the first time in the spring.
Dal Maso belongs to that working group.
“We hear the concerns of the residents and understand that there are things that cannot be done in the name of the law, such as vandalism and selling drugs,” says Dal Maso.
“We still do not agree that our customers are somehow being evicted from the area.”
“We have to find common ways so that everyone can be here.”
The working group will meet next time in August.
“We are working together to build neighborhood work as a model that could be spread to other neighborhoods and cities.”
We will meet still on the street of the male trio Aleksis Kivi.
The youngest of men, Larry, has decided to stop using drugs. He is in replacement therapy for the first time.
35-year-old Lari started using drugs at the age of 15. The replacement treatment has worked: he has already stayed dry for a couple of months.
“I’m about to go to prison for six years and it will be easier if it’s dry.”
It is possible to continue respite care in prison. Lari has been in prison before, but he has decided that the next sentence will be the last.
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