[Hpn] Local Situations...

Joseph Wessel jawessel@zdnetonebox.com
Sat, 27 Jan 2001 19:40:31 -0800


jawessel@zdnetonebox.com - email
I'm a newbie to this list, but not to being homeless...

Here in Albuquerque there does not seem to be much of a unified effort
to do something real about homelessness. There are very few services
available, mostly belonging to what Dickens called "C.O.S." (cringe or
starve). Funding is very short, and there seems to be no effort to get
the local community to participate in the solution through funding or
other means. 

I have been seeking help from the local agencies for the past year, and
since I was evicted nearly three weeks ago. The responses have ranged
from simple indifference to outright hostility. After struggling with
depression and addiction as a single father, getting no help anywhere,
I sent my son to live with his mother. My landlord used the police to
lock me out of my house (illegally) before I had a chance to move my
furniture and personal possessions. He took my personal effects too;
journals, food, personal hygiene items.  My plan was to sell my things,
and use the money to get a truck and camper. I will be suing the landlord,
and expect to win, however, no interim help is available. I am seeking
my own solution, since it is obvious to me that no one here will help.
I was able to borrow money from family to get the truck and camper, but
do not have heat in it yet. One way or another, I am confident I will
succeed in staying out of the local single men's shelters, and manage
to keep some dignity in doing so. I'm not too bitter at how I have been
treated, but I am disappointed. 

I am interested in finding a way to start an effort here to treat people
who are homeless with more respect. They need real access to resources,
housing, food, clothing. None of this is available here now, and there
is little awareness on the part of the general public as to how people
fall into becoming homeless. Moreover, I would like to see such an effort
be as non-polarizing as possible to avoid generating rhetoric which would
only obscure the realities of the situation.

If anyone wants to talk about any of this or has any comments, or if
any of the local providers want to get together and work on this, let
me know. I was on a homeless group for a time in Prescott AZ, and have
some background in economics.


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