[Hpn] Re: Ex-homeless people make good staff? Why or why not? Your experiences? experiences?

Tom Boland wgcp@earthlink.net
Wed, 27 Sep 2000 21:29:05 -0700 (PDT)


FWD Tue, 26 Sep 2000 from Forrest Curo <forest@cts.com>

Re: Ex-homeless people make good staff? Why or why not? Your experiences?

At 11:09 AM 9/27/00 -0700, [Tom Boland] wrote:
>How do formerly homeless people "work out" as staff in programs for
>homeless people, such as shelters?  What's your personal experience?
>
>What factors might explain how well or badly ex-homeless staff "work out?"

[Forrest Curo <forest@cts.com> Replies:]
Hi Tom. Pass this on if you see fit.

I have two kinds of experience. One is "security" guards at a large,
bureaucratic & hierarchical service provider's facility here, the folks who
mugged me & exposed my film because I'd taken a picture near their property.

Ex-homeless people can be extremely authoritarian & abusive if the system
that employs them encourages that.

The other experience is from the City Hall protest here a few years back.
After several guys had gotten sick of being "security" and throwing their
weight around in the ongoing effort to keep things orderly, a group of
several women started running things. They did NOT call themselves
"security" or try to order people around, but ran things pretty well (while
their energy lasted) with gentle appeals to reason, getting along, etc.

& of course there's Anne's experience in Italy. There, the group apparently
keeps 'staff' acting on their behalf from getting out of line. And THAT, I
think, is important for keeping staff doing right, whether they're homeless
or homed.

Forrest

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