CAPE COD’S OUTPATIENT WARD: The way too common spectacle of intoxicated individuals being picked up off the ground in Hyannis [BRIEF VIDEO]

CAPE COD’S OUTPATIENT WARD: The way too common spectacle of intoxicated individuals being picked up off the ground in Hyannis [BRIEF VIDEO]

HN NOTE: I’ve lived all over this small planet. Guadalajara, Mexico… Bangkok, Thailand… New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Canada… and even Penikese Island. etc… and despite their own set of specifically unique problems,  you didn’t see drug and alcohol addled adults laying about on the ground requiring emergency services on an hourly basis, or at least daily, like you see here in Hyannis..

In Hyannis, it’s a daily occurrence for HN to come across some poor soul overdosing, or otherwise completely intoxicated, laying about, requiring immediate emergency services… consisting of at least one police patrol car, Hyannis Rescue ambulance, not to mention hospital staff… and very often even more resources than that.

That is not normal.

All this in light of yesterday’s revealing report by the Cape Cod Times, which presented statistics saying that, per capita, Barnstable has been named one of the most dangerous places in the United States…


Pile on top high rates of drug abuse…

… poverty…

… and it’s quite obvious that Hyannis  (along with the greater Cape Cod area) has some very serious issues, to say the least.

HN typically doesn’t come close to always documenting the daily spectacles of intoxicated individuals being lifted up into ambulances.  In fact, I tend to shy away from these common scenes…  because they have become sort of normal and generally accepted around here.

Very often people shrug it off and say things like, “welcome to Hyannis” or “it’s everywhere,” etc…

I look at people who deny the problems in Hyannis and always ask myself, “and how are you benefiting from the suffering that has so conveniently been levied upon all of us living here?”

Not covering these daily scenes is perhaps a big mistake.  These scenes should not be normalized in my opinion…

The following video, taken on Main Street shortly after 6:00PM yesterday, near family homes (kids growing up around here see this stuff all the time, by the way…), only briefly highlights what I’m talking about…

And I have to at least ask myself, ‘What, if anything, can be done to make things better in Hyannis?’


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Robert Bastille


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10 responses to CAPE COD’S OUTPATIENT WARD: The way too common spectacle of intoxicated individuals being picked up off the ground in Hyannis [BRIEF VIDEO]

  1. Joan January 16th, 2017 at 8:30 am

    Rob I drove past this last night…it was early actually. How sad for those who are under the influence to be seen lying on the ground.
    I try not to let those images define my view of Hyannis.


  2. Donna January 16th, 2017 at 8:33 am

    This is really sad. I hope the city council can come up with a way to clean the town up. I feel van for the residents esp kids who have to see this every day and I feel bad for the owners of the restaurants and stores. With no tourist from May to October that town will die for sure. It has been :3 years now that I haven’t vacationed at the cape ☹️


  3. Robert Bastille January 16th, 2017 at 8:53 am

    I agree Joan… having seen this so often on a daily basis, many have learned to ignore it…. but for the tourist, or prospective business person, it’s a difficult bell to unring.


  4. furrypants January 16th, 2017 at 9:11 am

    when people have no hope,no home,no financial future this is what government is not going to help and no one should rely on that option.1. most councilors don’t live in Hyannis.2. town is small group trying to handle huge problem(I don’t attend meetings do you)3. the working poor cant afford our rent or car insurance to get to your job that pays min wage. no wonder everybody is falling down drunk or wanting out of this sad when that is your only escape .its gonna get worse because more people have no place to go no money and no hope.the town taxes and fee for this that and the other thing will surely bring more people down to level they have never seen


  5. Robert Bastille January 16th, 2017 at 11:41 am

    As they say… the first step is admitting we have a serious problem. But in my opinion, we need to have a mayoral form of government that can be voted out if things don’t improve… right now, nobody is accountable and powerful state funded services are walking all over us… everyone dumping their problems on Hyannis and surrounding areas. But rest assured, if we are to believe some of our current elected officials, the world’s sea creatures are now safer because every grocery shopper can no longer get plastic bags… and they only took two town meetings to hash that one out, with it barely passing by one vote, after hours of testimony and debate…such nonsense!!! and these are the same officials who hire our town manager, a position not directly accountable to voters as a whole… the current charter has us all divided into villages, separating us… the entire charter needs to change


  6. Bob January 16th, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    Well said f.p. And you,Robert.


  7. Joan January 17th, 2017 at 6:42 am

    We can’t un-ring that bell. Our economy relies on tourism to survive. Remember this is a city….with socioeconomic woes to go along with it.


  8. Mark January 17th, 2017 at 6:50 am

    Hyannis is a toilet that needs to be flushed. Too many walking turds


  9. Real Deal January 17th, 2017 at 11:27 am

    Here’s the brutal reality of how Cape Cod will look in 10 or even just 5 years: The Trump administration will cut off virtually all federal funding for every “new deal” program that Roosevelt started and “Great Society” program that Johnson extended. It’s over. You voted for him America, so now you’ll get to reap what ye sowed. I can’t say if it’s good or bad, it’s just what’s going to happen, and there is absolutely nobody who can stop him. All those public sector jobs, that are one of the few reasonably well paying and steady sources of income on Cape Cod? Axed. His cabinet appointments all have one thing in common: they absolutely despise government. That means they despise all you $40-80K (or more) teachers, firefighters, administrators, etc who are government employees. (But I think they do love the police, if only to keep a sort of marital law style of enforcement in place). Otherwise, If you currently work in any form of State, Federal, or Local govt, start polishing your resume now, not tomorrow, not after lunch, NOW because you will be laid off before the year is out. That’s just how it is now.

    When all that funding is cut, the Cape will ‘get clean’ by purging all it’s poor people over the other side of the bridge. What little safety net exists now, will be gone. Oh, by the way Poor on Cape Cod is now going to be defined purely by the free market. So that means only people who can afford the median home price of $350K, (and that’s probably only going to get you a 1970s era ranch with 2br 1.5 bath in desperate need of another $50-90K of rehab). If you want something “nice” in the modern vernacular of McMansionVille USA circa 2017, you will need $400-800K, depending on the town and neighborhood. Waterfront? Only the independently wealthy need apply. That means minimum net worth of $10M or so.

    So after the dust settles, Cape Cod will consist of the following demographic clusters: Old people who bought a house 20-40 years ago (or more) and have enjoyed a ridiculous level of appreciation with relatively low real estate taxes thanks to the new money multi millionaires and billionaires who purchased their 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th homes the way most people collect cabbage patch kids or stamps. They have more money than they know what to do with, and with virtually 0% interest rates and the stock market now at a historical high (sorry, none of you regular Cape Codders were invited to that party) they saw Cape real estate as a pretty good investment. They do not, repeat, DO NOT give a flying F. about our homeless, jobless, hopeless problems that most people continue to fight here. Didn’t learn empathy at Harvard or Wharton or Stamford, I guess.

    Then- you have a tiny class of professionals, doctors, lawyers, dentists, financial service types, and anyone who can make their living with an internet connection. That’s a very small, privileged slice of smart people who can earn over $100K year and live a nice, comfortable lifestyle here.

    Then- The rich, and the super rich. They own all the waterfront and the next layer in from the waterfront. They are the multimillionaires and billionaires who have been quietly (or not so quietly) buying up the best of Cape Cod for 30 years. They support the tax base of this county, with massive homes worth millions and 10s of millions of dollars, and they help keep RE taxes low for everyone else. They use very few services, as they are here only a few months out of the year. Most of the time, their massive manses are unoccupied. It doesn’t make much sense, but I suppose they are busy earning enough money to support that 4th home on Cape Cod. Those are market forces at work.

    AT this point, everyone who cannot afford to live on the peninsula (like the all the service workers who clean the homes, maintain the yards, plumbers, carpenters, etc), will need to be bussed or flown in. In other words, Cape Cod will look like Nantucket or Martha’s Vineyard. There is no community or political will to create affordable housing. We end up with complexes like Alewife Circle, and other infamous Section 8 paradises that end up on with depressing regularity. So the residents will be sent packing over the bridges and the complexes bulldozed. It has not worked, because there is no upward path to self-sufficiency on the Cape.

    Fisherman, artists, writers, and other interesting hardworking characters who defined what it meant to be a Cape Codder are welcome to stay. Assuming they have a $500K or so nest egg or net worth to support themselves. I figure all 10 of those people will live in Provincetown or Wellfleet. Maybe Falmouth.

    And that’s it, really. Note who’s missing: Young families with children who are the future lifeblood of any community. What are the parents supposed to do that will pay a $2000 /mo mortgage along with food/fuel/taxes/transport etc. etc. And there won’t be any public schools, (note they have been shrinking and closing for years now)

    So, the cape will wither way, perhaps the next strata of wealthy people will continue to buy up the interior lots, as Cape Cod octogenarians die off, (and their children who chose not to stick around Hyannis and shoot heroin and die anyway have long since left). It will become just a tourist destination from May-Oct and the rest of the time it will be a nearly empty peninsula littered with massive 4000sqft+ homes that are occupied maybe 3 months out of the year.

    I just don’t see any other realistic outcome, because without social engineering, the free market determines and shapes everything. At least you wont have junkies overdosing behind the Town Hall, or drunks peeing in the Cumbies parking lot.


  10. HyannisMa January 17th, 2017 at 11:53 am

    Why you alt-right types choose to get so bent out of shape about banning plastic bags is beyond me. You’re missing the bigger picture, which is the forces of extreme wealth and extreme poverty are shaping Cape Cod. And both political parties are to blame, it’s not a democrat or republican, liberal or conservative issue anymore. The problem power has been increasingly concentrated in the hands of the few, and those few do NOT care about the interests of the general public.