Tag Archives: apologists / enablers in Boulder

Random stuff 5/10/2017

DONATING TO A NONPROFIT IS NOT THE SAME AS HELPING THE HOMELESS!

By Max R. Weller

1) Letter-to-editor of the Daily Camera by Melanie Holden of Boulder, copied below in its entirety:

From what I’ve learned from Daily Camera articles, if I ever don’t want to be stuck living on the streets, all I have to do is be deemed a “dangerous sex offender” and agencies will make sure I have a roof over my head and a bed. Doesn’t seem fair that law-abiding homeless people get less support.

Melanie, I’d be thrilled to simply have a 10′ x 10′ space to park my own Tiny Coroplast House. I’d pay for the materials and build it myself. It would be good to have access to a port-a-potty nearby, and this leads us to the concept of a Tiny House Community. One thing I’d NEVER need is a bunch of “case managers” micro-managing my life — because McDonald’s wouldn’t hire them with their worthless degrees in sociology.

My house

Tiny House Community

2) Mayor Suzanne Jones of Boulder is one of the city officials who has allowed the homeless shelter / services industry here to screw things up so very badly; we’re spending many more millions of $$$ than ever, but have many more people living on the streets. She’s also the executive director of the bankrupt “nonprofit” Eco-Cycle, which only now is subject to a competitive bidding process after 40 years of crooked politics behind the scenes (Suzanne’s twin sister, Elise Jones, is a Boulder County Commissioner):

Will NEVER be invited to visit my tiny house.

3) When I got off of the northbound SKIP bus at Broadway & Canyon earlier to walk over to our Main Library, I saw several transients standing around in the Bandshell, and one was passed out on stage. Always anxious to be of help, I yelled to them: “Get that f***ing drunk out of our Bandshell! Put a boot in his a**!” Satisfied with my good deed, I proceeded on my way to 1001 Arapahoe.

4) Peak 2 Peak Forest Watch now has over 700 members, dedicated to stopping the BUMS from ruining our forests! Compare that to a paltry 181 members for Boulder Rights Watch, the apologists / enablers who support the worst-behaved transients in Boulder County. ROTFL!

5) I enjoy the rains overnight; as I’ve mentioned before, the patter of raindrops on my tarp lulls me to sleep . . .

A good start to ending the Transient Migration to Boulder, CO

HELP BOULDER COUNTY’S OWN HOMELESS MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN — NOT THE WORST-BEHAVED TRANSIENTS FROM ELSEWHERE!

By Max R. Weller

Read the report in the Daily Camera here: Homeless worry as day shelter closes and Boulder plans systemic shift. Copied below in its entirety:

Steve and Kyla wait with other homeless people for Deacon’s Closet to open on Thursday. Homeless people wait outside Deacon’s Closet to pick up

Steve and Kyla wait with other homeless people for Deacon’s Closet to open on Thursday. Homeless people wait outside Deacon’s Closet to pick up clothing. This clothing bank is part of the First Presbyterian Church in Boulder. (Cliff Grassmick / Staff Photographer)

On Friday at the First Presbyterian Church annex on Walnut Street, a group of homeless people lounged as an April snow whirled outside, on what was the third-to-last time daytime sheltering would be offered in Boulder.

Beginning Monday, this service, provided in rotating church locations by the organizations Bridge House and Boulder Outreach for Homeless Overflow — better known around town as BOHO — will end.

BOHO’s Residents’ Shelter, a year-round nighttime space that accommodates up to 40 people, will also cease operation. Seventeen BOHO staff members, all of whom are formerly homeless, will be out of work.

Also closing Monday is the Bridge House resource center at the Walnut annex, which has long been the primary place for Boulder’s homeless to seek out direct access or leads to things like medical care, bus passes, housing vouchers and applications, and birth certificate and social security card reclamation.

This is all a part of a planned systemic change to the way local government and “safety net” non-profits will approach homelessness.

A new vision, centered less on emergency services and more on transitional and permanent housing solutions, promises to bring a series of new programs at new locations with new priorities.

Some services, like those provided by the Boulder Shelter for the Homeless on north Broadway through Bridge House’s Ready to Work program, will either remain intact or be expanded.

But as the snow fell Friday and the homeless keeping warm indoors pondered the prospect of no longer having a day shelter at which to get a free lunch or even simply a safe place to stay for a few hours, the focus was on the immediate impact, and morale was low.

“These people are concerned. They’re not real happy,” said Ron Hempstead, a 53-year-old homeless Boulder native.

“It’s the simple things that just make day-to-day existence a little easier when you’re homeless. So it does feel like they’re pretty much throwing us to the wolves.”

Jordan Samuelson, who a few years ago suffered injuries from a car crash that cost him his job and ultimately his housing, said the end of day sheltering in Boulder will “leave a lot of people in a lot of dire.”

Just two days earlier, the city had announced plans to up enforcement of its urban camping ban by increasing police patrols and encampment sweeps in some of the areas with the highest concentrations of homeless people.

“A lot of us are worried, especially when you see a day like today,” Samuelson said, pointing out toward the snowy street. “This town is becoming so homeless-unfriendly.”

Cutbacks precede planning

On May 16, the City Council will discuss the long-awaited recommendations produced through months of meetings by a working group on homelessness, convened by the council in the fall and tasked with evaluating budgetary and programmatic changes Boulder should make as it joins communities around country in shifting toward a “housing first” approach.

“We can’t abandon the needs for temporary, short-term solutions,” said Isabel McDevitt, executive director of Bridge House. “But we need a continuum that is more focused toward the exits than the entries, and right now, because of our lack of a coordinated system and a lack of a cohesive strategy, we’ve been way too focused on the emergency system.”

One of the central goals expressed by the council and sure to be featured in the yet-to-be-publicized working group recommendations concerns a new kind of intake program.

As officials across Colorado grow increasingly concerned with what’s commonly described as an influx of younger homeless people more prone to being transient-by-choice, Boulder plans to begin implementing something like a library card system, wherein clients can be tracked by name and services accessed.

This, theoretically, will allow providers to both better understand and assist people on individual bases, and to identify which homeless people are local and should be prioritized for city services, and which are simply passing through.

“People who need help would go to a location, and everybody who’s trying to access services would go through there,” explained Karen Rahn, the city’s director of Human Services. “It could be that this happens at a couple locations, to make it convenient. But wherever it happens, people will be assessed or screened using common, standard tools and process. Everyone trying to access services will be known to us, and we’ll be able to track them through the system, so that people are less likely to fall through the cracks.”

Rahn said she’s aware many homeless fundamentally distrust police and anyone else trying to “track them,” and promised that the new focus is “not interested in names … but in knowing how people are going to get help.”

It’s not clear exactly where this revamped intake will happen moving forward. The changes starting Monday come 15 days before the council even gets a crack at the working group’s recommendations and begins discussions of future budgeting and facilities based on those recommendations.

“The timelines don’t match up”, said McDevitt, “so we basically have to problem-solve for the summer and then really put emphasis as a community to implementing what’s in the workplan.”

Today’s outlook

The plan, at least for the very near term, is as follows:

Case management services, previously offered at the annex resource center, will now be provided at sites of various organizations, like the library and Clinica Family Health.

The nightly dinner put on by Bridge House’s Community Table Kitchen will continue, and the lunch schedule dissolved by the closure of day sheltering will be replaced by a sack-lunch program.

The north Boulder shelter will expand its “clean and sober” transitional program to 120 beds, up from 90 last summer and 60 three years ago. In the mornings, breakfast, showers and laundry will all be available there, too, as they have been.

Meanwhile, as a city news release stated, “implementation planning for fall services will take place over the summer with a goal of launching most service changes by Oct. 1.”

Without knowing the long-term plan, and staring down a series of service losses starting this week, many of those who access these services or advocate for the homeless are displeased.

“The so-called plan is so much fairy dust, sprinkled across the entirety of Boulder,” Darren O’Connor of Boulder Rights Watch wrote in an email to the council, “with the (working group) and the city moving forward wishing homelessness and homeless people, and their very real and dire needs, will all go away.”

At least one member of the working group, who requested anonymity, said O’Connor’s assessment wasn’t far off.

“I was there for all those meetings,” they said. “We didn’t get (expletive) done.”

That member continued, “At the end of the day, we could’ve all gone and had a coffee and said, ‘OK, let’s get rid of this and that and try to use the shelter more. We don’t know what it’s gonna look like, but we’ll try to figure it out later.’ A one-hour meeting could’ve accomplished what ten of those did.” 

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What a bunch of crybabies! So now the transient pansies have been deflowered and will have to do more to help themselves — sounds good to the Homeless Philosopher:

1) No more drunken flophouses at either Boulder Shelter for the Homeless or Boulder Outreach for Homeless Overflow;

2) No more “day shelter” in the pleasant summer months (nobody will melt when it rains, I promise);

3) No more Free Lunches for the bums;

4) No more “resource center” directing the bums where to go for Free Stuff;

5) An increased focus on shelter / services for Boulder County residents in need, rather than Alabama arsonists or Florida sex offenders or other assorted riffraff from around the nation.

I’d sum it up with this meme:

Of course, the local homeless shelter / services industry wants to focus more on so-called transitional living programs — that’s where the BIG MONEY from both private donors and government agencies comes into play, and we’re talking about millions and millions of $$$ each and every year in Boulder, CO alone! There has never been much moola in emergency shelters and soup kitchens intended to meet short-term needs of the homeless.

It’s another post, and I won’t go into it here, but the only program clients who ever “succeed” in any transitional living arrangement are those in the 10% who would have done so on their own, anyway . . .

This is only a beginning to ending the Transient Migration, folks; now, we must see Boulder police turned loose to move the bums on down the road. How about it, City Council members?

(This post e-mailed to Boulder City Council.) 

Enablers to transients: Come to Boulder, die for dope . . .

Providing all of life’s necessities for FREE is NOT compassion; it only makes it easier for substance abusers to continue their self-destructive behavior.

By Max R. Weller

Read the story in the Daily Camera here: Body of transient woman found in Boulder on Saturday; foul play ruled out. Copied below in its entirety:

Boulder police are investigating the death of a female transient whose body was found Saturday morning as drug related after they were able to rule out foul play during an autopsy Monday.

Officers were called about 8 a.m. Saturday to the area of 19th Street and Upland Avenue about a possible death, Boulder police spokeswoman Shannon Cordingly said. When officers arrived, they discovered the body of a woman in an area where she and two other transients had been camping.

Cordingly said a preliminary investigation shows there is a “strong possibility” that the death was drug related.

Cordingly said there were signs of trauma on the body that caused investigators to initially not rule out foul play. But by Monday afternoon, Cordingly said the initial results of an autopsy provided enough information for investigators to rule out foul play.

Police did not say what the signs of trauma were.

Investigators have asked for toxicology tests.

Boulder District Attorney Stan Garnett said his office was notified of the case, though they will wait for the results of the autopsy and the police investigation before they determine if they need to get involved.

“My office is always on call to consult with police as they investigate any sort of death,” Garnett said.

The Boulder County Coroner’s Office will conduct an autopsy to determine the cause and manner of death. The name of the woman will be released once she has been identified and her next of kin have been notified.

Mitchell Byars: 303-473-1329, byarsm@dailycamera.com or twitter.com/mitchellbyars

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I won’t publish her name, but I knew her from Boulder Shelter for the Homeless this season. Like almost all of the out-of-state transients who come to Boulder, the availability of “legal” marijuana was the primary motivation in her case. Although she didn’t seem to me to be someone into hard drugs like heroin, this is where the homeless drug culture can lead you, and in that sense marijuana most certainly can be a so-called gateway drug.

This is also why I consider the concept of a “homeless community” absolutely harmful to homeless people themselves; isolation from the rest of society is NEVER a good thing for anybody, and the Homeless Philosopher has always made a point of seeking out friends and acquaintances in what I call the Real World.

Ultimately, of course, the individual who dies from a drug overdose (not yet confirmed in this case) is responsible for their self-destruction . . . However, when Boulder, CO has an entire homeless shelter / services industry which operates by the creed of More Homeless People = More Money, and provides life’s necessities — FOOD, CLOTHING, EMERGENCY SHELTER, MEDICAL CARE, CAMPING GEAR, ETC. AT NO COST — the homeless person is able to spend their own meager resources on worthless stuff like cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana, and hard drugs. It’s an unintended consequence of inappropriate compassion which has contributed to the deaths of many transients, and those who support it belong in a Hall of Shame:

Addendum: Boulder, CO’s do-gooders enable misery and death of the homeless originally published in the summer of 2014.

(This post e-mailed to Boulder City Council.)

Random stuff 4/12/2017

HELP BOULDER COUNTY’S OWN HOMELESS MEN, WOMEN, AND CHILDREN — NOT TRANSIENTS WHO DISRESPECT THE COMMUNITY!

By Max R. Weller

1) Thanks to Bridge House board member Jay Young, who claimed in a Daily Camera guest opinion published last weekend to be working at Whole Foods Market on Baseline (it closed forever back in February), Ready to Work is again in the spotlight:

That’s Mr. Young on the right; I have no doubt that posing for this photo op was the hardest thing these guys did all day . . .

2) It’s Conference on World Affairs time at CU once again, albeit minus all the media hype of past years.

If you’re one of the penniless, scruffy-looking characters like me who rides the SKIP bus back and forth on Broadway, you’re privileged to rub elbows for this single week with Boulder’s moneyed upper crust. I’ve yet to listen in on any of their conversations that enlightened me to any degree worth mentioning, however.

3) Teen sexting? So-called slut shaming? What a great way for teens with way too much time on their hands to gain attention and shock their peers and authority figures alike . . . Previous generations of PARENTS and SCHOOL ADMINISTRATORS would have known how to deal with this nonsense. Why do teenagers require a [dumbass]phone on a 24/7 basis without parental supervision, anyway? Ban these [dumbass]phones from school campuses; any legitimate need to make or receive a phone call during school hours can be taken care of with an old-fashioned landline in the office. Can’t send dirty pictures that way . . .

4) I’m moving away from my longtime spot in the 4900 block of N. Broadway, at least far enough away that I won’t be irritated by the drunkards who have taken it over (most of the time) in the past three or four years. A pox on them and the enablers who support their degraded lifestyle:

Why Tiny Homes won’t work in Boulder, CO

DEMAND ACCOUNTABILITY, STOP ENABLING BAD BEHAVIOR!

By Max R. Weller

OVE Site Plans 13 Aug 2013_Page_1

Opportunity Village Eugene (OR) site plans (click on image to enlarge)

Why NOT in Boulder?

The rules in any of the Tiny Homes Communities in cities elsewhere are VERY STRICT compared to what you find here in Boulder, CO’s emergency shelters or transitional living programs run by local nonprofits. This makes Tiny Homes unsuitable for the worst-behaved transients, but they would be great for a select few homeless men and women, maybe many dozens, if only you could keep the apologists / enablers like Isabel McDevitt, Greg Harms, Betsey Martens, and the Boulder Rights Watch crowd AWAY FROM ANYTHING TO DO WITH IT. Everything these yahoos touch becomes FUBAR, and most Boulderites don’t trust them any more than I do.

See for yourself how it’s designed to work in an ideal setting with this link to Opportunity Village Eugene (OR). Quoting from the website below:

Opportunity Village Eugene (OVE) opened in August 2013 as a “transitional micro-housing” pilot project. The vision was to create a collaboration between the housed and unhoused that provides stable and safe places to be through cost-effective, human-scale approaches for transitioning the unhoused to more sustainable living situations. 

It accommodates around 30 otherwise homeless individuals and couples at a time in simple, micro-housing (60-80sf) that provides residents with security, stability, and privacy. By consolidating utilities to common cooking, gathering, restroom, and laundry facilities we were able to keep costs very low, providing an intermediate solution between the street and traditional housing. 

OVE is a self-governed, peer-supported community with oversight provided by SquareOne Villages. 

A Community Agreement lays out the basic rules of the village, while an ever evolving Village Manual outlines the policies and procedures for operating and maintaining the village.

 5 Basic Rules:

  • No violence 

  • No theft

  • No alcohol or illegal drugs on-site

  • No persistent, disruptive behavior

  • Everyone must contribute to the operation and maintenance of the Village. 

What you get:

  • A small, safe and private space to call your own

  • Access to common kitchen, bath, laundry, gathering, and workshop facilities

  • Computer and wi-fi access

  • Quarterly bus pass 

What you give:

  • $30/month utility fee

  • 8 hours/week of front desk duty

  • 2 hours/week towards community improvement

  • Clean community bathroom once a month

  • Attendance at the weekly village meeting