There is nothing wrong with charity, but when San Francisco’s leaders refuse to address the root causes of the city’s homelessness problem, asking residents to house the homeless for free feels wrong on many levels. The Daily Mail reports:
Homelessness in the Bay Area has become such a problem people are being urged to give their spare rooms over to the homeless.
Some charities have urged local families – who are sick of seeing the homeless crisis on their doorsteps – to do something about it personally by taking unhoused people into their own homes and spare rooms – and some schemes have little to no compensation.
Christi Carpenter, executive director of East Bay nonprofit Safe Time, which places homeless families and college students in spare bedrooms for one-to-six months, told Mercury News: ‘This is something that someone can do when they just feel that despair of ‘oh my gosh, I just can’t stand seeing these poor people on the streets near my home.’
Richie Greenberg, the only Republican to challenge Breed and her fellow Democrats in the 2018 special election, told DailyMail.com the schemes were a publicity stunt and downright ‘creepy.’
‘The sheer number of people, and the reasons behind them being homeless, means it won’t have an impact,’ he said.
Greenberg, a small business advisor, said that because the majority of the homeless were mentally ill or drug addicts, they would not be assisted by the programs.
What was needed, he said, was more facilities for drug rehabilitation and a way of caring for the mentally ill so they did not harm themselves or others.
He said the idea of individuals opening up their doors for the common good was not new – especially in San Francisco – but it was not a long-term, scalable solution.
‘This is not a new idea – it’s been floated for many years,’ he said. ‘Particularly in San Francisco – it goes back to freedom, and the summer of love, and hippies and communal houses, with strangers crashing on your couch.
‘It’s not an unheard of concept. But we’re not talking about flower children. Now it gets a bit absurd.’
Greenberg continued: ‘A very high percentage of San Francisco’s homeless people are homeless because they are addicted to drugs or mentally ill. So the number of candidates is going to be quite limited.
‘It won’t be the mentally ill or drug addicts, who account for around 60-70 percent.’
He said the proposal was ‘unrealistic’. ‘Secondly, it’s creepy,’ he said.
‘If you are looking for a room mate, that’s one thing – you can check references, and talk to people at their previous places. But these are not that kind of people. A lot are down on their luck.’
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