We’re all coming out of the pandemic a little worse for wear after so much isolation and struggle with changes in our society. I have noticed as a St. Paulite that there has been a huge increase in the number of folks who are in need of support in the downtown area – there are more encampments, more people sleeping in our parks, more people who obviously need a place to be with nowhere but outside.
Preventing the Listening House organization from opening the Day Center in the old Red Savoy’s seems completely counteractive to the goal of getting these people off the streets. By providing a space staffed by professionals equipped to deal with the poverty crisis, mental health crisis, and substance crisis we’re witnessing, we are not only getting these folks off the streets but giving them a space to heal and work on bettering their lives.
As the weather gets colder, our hearts should be getting warmer. The people on the streets are our neighbors too, and we need to step up and act accordingly to help our community get better as a whole instead of fighting resources that help those who need it most. I am begging our community to not only allow Listening House to open their day center, but to do what we can to emphatically support all the service providers working hard daily to improve the homelessness situation in our area.
I wish that some of the opposition to these good things trying to happen would find their humanity. How do we connect to our community when there is so much divisiveness and unwillingness to care for one another?
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