“The city of Asheville needs to adopt a zero-tolerance policy on camping in city parks. It is not sustainable, is unsanitary and just plain does not work.”
“AVL must put an end to abuse of Asheville’s growing and always changing homeless population by the Asheville Police Department, Department of Transportation and City Hall.”
By Irene Olds
“Way to go again, fake ‘progressive’ NIMBY speculators!”
“It does seem odd that the trees were removed from spots that homeless people cool off at or take shelter to wait for the bus.”
According to the nonprofit Homeward Bound WNC, close to half of those experiencing homelessness in Buncombe County are veterans, a figure that also includes people benefiting from long-term transitional housing programs.
Terry Joe Self was one of 22 homeless and formerly homeless people in Asheville remembered at an interfaith service Dec. 19 at Haywood Street. At the climax of the ceremony, organizers read the names of the dead and lit 22 candles, each representing one of the people who died. Since 2012, the annual ceremony has honored more than 100 people.
“We must recognize that as long as we prioritize more hotels, more restaurants, more new construction (none of which is wholly bad), we must also acknowledge the consequences of those priorities — the displacement of people on the margins — and find ways to sustainably address them.”
“If your government can’t solve the problem, and they probably never will, it’s time you take matters into your own hands.”
“Why are we expecting people to be in some other circumstance without considering the system that fails them? Where’s the rope and toehold?”
“Pity is sadness for one’s misfortune and keeps you in the past, but an exchange in goods and sharing of resources moves you forward.”
“There are better ways to handle this problem, and one is already being tried in Albuquerque, N.M., under the mayorship of Richard Berry, appropriately called the Better Way program.”
Four Asheville ministers speak of their vision and understanding about what it means to help those in need. The encounter of helping another person, they say, can be transforming for both the giver and receiver and holds the potential to change the world we live in.
“If only 1 cent of every room tax was contributed to the Home Trust Fund, we would collect $1.8 million dollars per year! Think about what a difference that would make to our housing shortage!”
“Through a partnership with Homeward Bound, the city of Asheville provides support to implement the federal Supportive Services for Veteran Families grant. Homeward Bound was awarded $2.7 million in federal funding from the Department of Veterans Affairs to implement its Supportive Services for Veteran Families (SSVF) over the next three years.”
“Some time ago, an announcement was made public that Asheville’s mayor had accepted [first lady] Michelle Obama’s challenge to end veterans’ homelessness. Since then, I have not seen or heard anything about the actual plans to do this.”