I was excited to find an organization that was starting up micro-housing in my area. But, on closer examination, this organization has no intention of housing the homeless, but putting portable housing units on private property and using them to rent “to low income people”. The person who runs this program told me it WAS NOT intended for homeless individuals, BUT when interviewed on the news, he claimed the program was to relieve homelessness in our area. Two faced!
Tag Archives: Coalition for the Homeless
John Joyce, RI’s Pioneering Homeless Advocate
This excerpt has my gold seal of approval:
Q: What got you into becoming a homeless advocate?
Being homeless myself. Some of the service providers that I went to, I felt like I was second-class. I felt like no one cared. I’ve seen atrocities in shelters, people being belittled, degraded and it basically pissed me off. What can I do to change that attitude? So I started going to meetings. I heard about state meetings and then the Coalition for the Homeless, I’d go there and I’d bring my backpack with my life on my back and I’d go to these meetings and it gave me a chance to vent. But what I was saying was what I was experiencing and then at the end of the meeting they would say, “O.K. Now, shoo, shoo, be a nice boy and go back to whatever dumpster you came from,” and that’s the attitude I got from people. But I didn’t let that deter me, either. Because I’d show up at the next meeting and I’m still going to the meetings. A lot of people out there, they think they don’t have a voice. I’m just a messenger sometimes. I’ll ask people, “What you just told me— are you willing to come to a meeting and say that?” and they’ll say, “Oh, no! I can’t do that because I’m afraid that I’ll get retaliated against.” So I just carry that message.
Interview by Patricia Raub
John Joyce (1962-2013) became an advocate for others after being homeless for a while. One of his accomplishments was to make Rhode Island the first state to enact a Homeless Bill of Rights. This interview took place last fall, when he was busily working while ill with cancer.
Q: During the past session, the General Assembly passed a Homeless Bill of Rights into law. Could you explain what a “Homeless Bill of Rights” is, exactly?
It’s not special rights, it’s just equal rights. It was our feeling when we were going up there that legislators would think the bill was going to be special rights for a certain class. But that wasn’t the case. What we were hearing from people without homes in Rhode Island was some of the discriminatory tactics that people were using against them. The rights were always in place. The Homeless Bill…
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Shelter report: shocking claims on gatekeeping
I experienced ‘GateKeeping’ myself. The public housing people try to make it very hard for the homeless to get a unit.
- Homeless Shelter Population Reaches Record 50,000 (nbcnewyork.com)
- The City is for All: “We are not asking for free housing” (Budapest) (brainsections.wordpress.com)
- Dufty: Homelessness won’t be solved (sfgate.com)