[Hpn] Toledo Winter Crisis Shelter A Disgraceful Mess - by Ruth Rader (fwd) (fwd)

Tom Boland wgcp@earthlink.net
Wed, 3 Jan 2001 21:36:06 -0800 (PST)

CIRCULATE PLEASE FWD Tue, 02 Jan 2001 RELPY TO author: Ruth Rader <blondie_starii@hotmail.com> HERE IS A COPY OF AN EMAIL THAT I SENT EARLIER TODAY TO THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE ST.PAUL SHELTER AND COMMUNITY CENTER IN TOLEDO, OHIO. THIS IS REGARDING THEIR WINTER CRISIS SHELTER...I THINK YOU SHOULD READ THIS: Dear Ruth Arden... I am writing because I am concerned about a bad situation at the Winter Crisis part of the St. Paul's Shelter. On New Year's Eve, a group of us went to the Winter Crisis night spot. When we got there we found a sign on the door that said that the Crisis section was closed down for the night. The Staff worker inside the regular shelter pushed me out the door when I went in to ask about the situation and the Deputy told us all to take off. We took off allright. I contacted every branch of media in the Toledo area and explained what was going on. The Deputy told me that the reason why Winter Crisis was closed that night was because they didn't have any staff available to monitor things. But they hadn't told us when we'd all gone there for lunch that day. No signs were posted and no announcemements were made. Then the staff said that it was 24F at 10pm on New Year's Eve and so they didn't have to open the doors anyway until the temperature dropped ANOTHER FOUR DEGREES! Ruth, can you see what I am seeing here? On the nights that Winter Crisis is open, we are dealing with the following: 1.) FILTHY BATHROOMS with NO TOILET PAPER and no soap. The commode is always covered with waste, the floor with dirt and grime and the sink with awful crud. 2.) FILTHY SHOWER with a dirty, scum-covered floor and a wall with missing tiles, torn insulation and exposed plumbing. 3.) DIRTY, UNWASHED BEDDING that is piled up everywhere in the section where the women sleep. Most of the time, the blankets and sheets are never washed and if any of them are...they're usually wet as all get out. 4.) AN EXHAUSTED, UN-TRAINED STAFF that really don't care about our well-being. The staff allows waay too many things to some individuals...last night someone was smoking in the women's sleeping section...and people have been in the kitchen and back food-storage areas on a regular basis...and have allowed men who have exhibited violent behavior to remain inside...the staff has allowed people to sit up all night and talk which has disturbed other people trying to sleep... We eat, sleep and try to clean up in dirt...in an environment that does NOT have to be that way. And on top of everything else, is not a space for the night that we can depend on on a regular basis. The provider system in Toledo has to create an alternative. There must be a way to resolve this situation without sending people out into a cold winter night. It is quite obvious that there are not enough beds available to house all of the people participating in Winter Crisis on any given night. I would like you to contact me. Thank You, Ruth Rader <blondie_starii@hotmail.com> END FORWARD Visit HPN for CONSTANTLY UPDATING NEWS on Homeless People organizing: ************************************************************ 9000+ articles by or via homeless & ex-homeless people INFO & to join/leave list - Tom Boland <wgcp@earthlink.net> Nothing About Us Without Us - Democratize Public Policy ************************************************************