Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Dealing With Bloomfield's Homeless

My recent encounters with impoverished homeowners and renters has helped make me more aware of the effect of the rocky economy on everyone. Until recently, the homeless have been nearly invisible in Bloomfield. (Illinois has developed an interesting program called PADS for effectively dealing with suburban homeless. They designed the chart on the left.) The lack of bathroom facilities in the Lackawanna RR Station area has lead to formal complaints by commuters. Yesterday's Baristanet story on the subject drew a dozens of thoughtful comments.

From my perspective, blmfld grl's was the most constructive:
"...agreed there are several directions to take

FACT – you should all know there is a Sergeant who has been working with Chief Goul to address the homeless situation in Bloomfield. Most of the individuals who are on the streets have homes or have family, though some do not.

I personally know many of them and know of the efforts put forth by this Sergeant. He is aware who receives SDI, who has other income, who has family. He has helped place individual in rehab/detox when possible (and when they want). He doesn’t stop there. He creates short term and long term arrangements for these individuals. Some have participated in the programs willingly, some have not.

There are many reasons behind each of their circumstances. I have purchased clothes for one who has a medical condition that caused them to bleed through their pants. I have purchased a coat/gloves for another who would be out in the cold. I have purchased food/drink for many of them. I will NOT give them cash.

But I address them all by name. They have names. Herbie, Lizzie, Eddie, Theresa…

I feel sorry for any of you whose lives may turn to a direction that you need help – especially if the people who are near you judge first.

I will be following up on this matter to ensure that public safety is addressed."

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