Have you heard the one about the city getting people to work by giving them beer?
Yea, they sign up alcoholics…Badump – pa – tish!
Only, it’s no joke.
Apparently Amsterdam has a lot of alcoholics. So the city formed a work crew made up of alcoholics and they bring them to work each day cleaning city streets. But isn’t’ this demeaning?
Not if you are an Amsterdam alcoholic. Here’s how it works. They report to work at 5:30 a.m., and promptly get two cans of beer. Two more cans at lunch, and two more at the end of the work day. Overall, six cans of beer. They also get a sandwich, a half packet of rolling tobacco, and 10 euros a day, or about $13.55.
Turns out the alcoholics can’t wait to get signed up for the program. City officials claim you can’t just say “stop drinking” to the alcoholics, but by making them productive and controlling their alcohol content, is a much better way to go. Besides, Amsterdam’s city streets are now cleaner than hospital toilets.
I wonder if this would work with methadone clinics in the United States? In Philadelphia, getting a meth clinic in your neighborhood is worse than a $200 parking ticket. It’s the kiss of death. Sections of the city organize and fight to prevent getting one.
But if the methadone recipients had to clean the streets in order to get their fix?
I don’t know, seems barbaric, don’t you think?