my unofficial policy "advisor"- more like I just shamelessly hijack what shes saying- because its nearly exactly the same as i would say- and shes more smooth in saying it- the feminine touch, i suppose..
People have criticized me when I say that we need to focus on temporary pre-shelter shelters that consists of sleeping bags and tents, but folks....that proposal is far more humane than what the street homeless currently have access too. Mayor Henry and all NINE members of City Council should be ashamed of themselves for allowing this needless suffering to continue.
- Gina Burgess I have proposed that as an idea as well---some street homeless want that. Some want to go to Utah where they might have access to housing. Some want to go to other places where they have family. But we need to do something here and now for the majority of the street homeless. Shame on the Mayor for not opening up a 24-hour warming shelter 12 hours in advance of when temps are going to drop below 32 degrees.
- Gina Burgess Christina Augustyniak -- Yes, this is very wrong. The worst part is that Tom Henry and some of the councilmen, like Tom Didier, are "good Catholics". I believe that Henry went to CC and Didier, I know for a fact, went to Dwenger. These guys hide behind small "achievements" where homelessness is concerned, but they turn an absolute blind eye to those who are most vulnerable....and at the time they are most vulnerable.
- David Roach Witch burnings, the inquisition- also courtesy of "good Catholics"- the crusades- slaughter of Islamics - thank you Vatican.
I have observed the 2 aforementioned politicians- are fond of wearing their religions on ther chests- for all to see- thuming them- saying- what a pious religious bible quoting person i am- well- the walk sometimes ( oft times) failes to match the talk. and dont even get me startted on a certain very wealthy membership out in south west about township.. - Megachurches- they have access to millions preach a fiery brand of holy roler, holier than the rest of us brand of what they call"christianity"- but there not one single thing "christin " about their behavior. more in common with ISIL; than anything Jesus christ ever said or did or told us to do.. its only 50 pages- of quotes in red in your NKJ- edition.
- Jeannette Jaquish David Roach, Gina Burgess, John Veltum, Let's get 600 people to donate $100 and buy four $150,000 5 bedroom houses and fill them full of beds to house homeless people. One for men, one for women and two for families. I pledge $100. Each could be supervised by one or two of the residents, and the rest have to chip in a little money to share utilities. Each $100 pledger could get a vote to make the rules of running the place, how long people get to stay, behavior, legal compliance and so on.
- Gina Burgess Tina Taviano -- They did eventually open up the Community Center. To their most recent credit, they have decided to keep that warming shelter open for 24 hours. I don't have the details on how many days or what the criteria will be to shut that warming shelter. What's been really, really disturbing is the pure inhumanity of knowing that there are people who are living out on the street in these weather conditions and having to be shamed by the community during an election year to do something as morally right and economically simple as keeping one place open 24 hours during severe freezing conditions. Frankly, anytime the temps dip below freezing warming shelters--plural--should be open and operating for at least the duration of the freezing conditions. What happened to the City of Churches?? It really makes me shudder to think how cold and calloused our so-called elected leaders would be if this were not an election year. This isn't a Democrat thing nor is it a Republican thing---its a doing what's right by your community thing. It's shameful and heartwrenching.
- Gina Burgess John Veltum -- As much as I would like to blame the investors in our community (especially those who would like to profit from downtown and/or riverfront development), the reality here is that homelessness is a public policy issue. Our elected officials (Mayor, City Council, County Commissioners, County Council, Township Trustees, etc) have all systematically failed the most vulnerable in our community. The Wayne Township Trustee has a huge building with heated offices that could have and should have been opened up to the public. Citizen Square--a co-op between City and County government---could have and should have been opened up to the public as a warming shelter (as could other government buildings, like the Botanical Gardens or the Public Library or the Memorial Coliseum, or buildings that are heavily subsidized by local government such as Parkview Field).
But just as disturbing is--we live in a City of Churches. Why didn't any of them open their doors when local government failed? For example--the Mayor recently "appointed" one of the at-large candidates on the Democratic ballot who is the former pastor of First Presbyterian Church (located in Downtown) and is (or was) the associate director of the Associated Churches of Fort Wayne--where was this guy? He's the Mayor's senior advisor on "community engagement." He's supposed to "promote Fort Wayne as a community of compassion, civility, and character where all people are deserving of dignity and respect." I don't see the street homeless or those living on fixed income who can't afford heat being treated with the dignity and respect they deserve--the very thing that warming shelters could help provide.
Our elected leaders are so clearly out of touch with our community. Warming shelters aren't just for the street homeless (although the street homeless are by far some of the most vulnerable members of our community). Warming shelters are for those who can't afford heat--senior citizens living on fixed incomes, families unable to make ends meet, the unemployed, etc.
With an executive order from the Mayor or Commissioners--shelters could have been opened up immediately before the need, which was well promoted in advance by all news media. With legislation, City Council could craft new policy so that under certain conditions, as a matter of law, shelters are opened up without need of an executive order. Those who could have come to aid of those in need of heat--the township trustee and the pastor of a church--could have done more in their capacity. That's why I said that investors in our community (whether you agree or disagree with what those investors may be trying to do) can't be held responsible. At the end of the day, those who deal with public policy matters--those with the elected authority to deal with public policy matters or the means the community has provied them to deal with public policy matters---have a duty and responsibility to deal with those public policy matters.