Friday, September 11, 2015
Protection from the Homeless
From this morning's "Letters to the Editor:"
The phrase “criminalization of the poor” is simply a mask for the removal of all laws that protect residents from the noxious behavior of transients.
The Times spouts this misleading characterization of modest controls that once protected residents. In the process, it turns a deaf ear to residents who find it unbearable to live with the harassment, loud nighttime noise, trespassing, thefts and defecation, urination and inebriation that spring from homeless encampments, which are often right next to our homes.
There is no evidence to support the federal homelessness task force's contention that breaking up encampments makes it harder to get homeless people into permanent housing. The voiding of vagrancy laws and tolerance of encampments actually make the homeless more “service resistant,” as they become habituated to their outdoor lifestyles and the drugs that are often a part of it.