Have you ever had your bike stolen? Did you bother reporting it to police?
Many people don’t take the time to notify police that they’ve been robbed. They think the police won’t do anything about it! The truth is, police often recover stolen property but have no idea who it belongs to. The stolen goods end up sitting in a storage facility for up to a year. Some police forces hold an annual auction to sell off all of the unclaimed goods. A recent police auction announcement in an Ontario newspaper sparked an interesting debate.
One commenter wrote: “In other words, I may be able to find some of the items that were stolen during a break-in at my parents home while they were at the hospital with my dying brother.”
Another defended the event: “The money goes right back to police fuel, vehicle maintenance, uniforms, duty equipment etc. Its not like they go buy a keg of beer and hold a huge party after the auction.”
Do you enjoy using authentic materials in the classroom? Share this article with your learners. This is a great topic for a classroom debate. Here are a few questions to discuss after you read the article.
- What do you call a person who calls out prices in an auction?
- Do you think police should donate unclaimed goods rather than sell them?
- How should profits from this type of auction be used?
- Why don’t citizens report some crimes to police?
- How is the word “outfit” used in this sentence?
Jutzi expects hundreds of bargain hunters to attend, including families looking to outfit everyone with bikes.
- What does this type of event say about the Canadian police force?
Try holding a mini-debate on this topic in your classroom. Assign half of the class to be “For” this idea, and the other half to be “Against” this suggestion.
Police should donate unclaimed goods to low-income families instead of holding an auction.
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Tara Benwell is a freelance writer and editor who specializes in materials and articles for the ELT industry. She is the media director and head writer for ESL-Library. Her debut novel, The Proper Order of Things is available on Amazon and in the iBookstore. Website: http://www.tarabenwell.com Twitter: @tarabenwell