The 25-year saga of Pillar Point Vietnamese Refugee Centre has been far too fraught and complicated for it to come quietly to a neat and tidy end. The stragglers who remain there, defying attempts to move them on, are the last casualties of the Vietnamese problem in Hong Kong. Institutionalised and unused to coping alone, the closure forces them to face the end of a dream that sustained them amid the drugs, violence and rootlessness of life behind the barbed wire. They must accept the reality that no country will accept them, and it is time to stand on their own feet. With Hong Kong identity cards and a chance to put down roots in a city renowned for the opportunities it offers to migrants determined to better themselves, most of the 15,000 who remained have gone off to make a new start. But that can be a terrifying prospect for people who have either forgotten what normal life is like, or have never experienced it. However basic the Pillar Point facilities, or the struggle for daily survival in the camp's claustrophobic atmosphere with its ethnic tensions and triad intimidation, it was for many the only home they knew. And it was free. Going out into the community, finding a place to live, looking for a job, while trying to exist on welfare payments of about $3,000 a month is no picnic. But the authorities recognise the problem and prudently decided to take the velvet-glove approach - until this morning when all those remaining can be treated as trespassers. Confrontation serves no purpose. If the handful remaining are to integrate into society, they will need support for some time yet, particularly those with a drug habit. Leaving them to become vagrants shifts the problem out on to the streets. Tuen Mun District Council could help the assimilation process by encouraging the community to be more sympathetic to the plight of the Vietnamese. Individual council members have not always helped in the past. Perhaps there is still room for compromise. An offer of temporary accommodation for a short period, contingent upon them actively seeking work, or maybe a small loan to cover a deposit on a rented room, would hardly be noticed in the $8.71 billion bill the SAR has already paid. Taxpayers may resist dipping into their pockets again, but if it solves the problem once and for all, it is a small price to pay.