Karen Batts (that’s her on the right of the photo), 52, of Portland, Ore., was evicted from subsidized housing for not paying her rent (she owed $338). She moved into a parking garage, where she froze to death on Saturday, becoming Portland’s fourth person who is homeless to die on the streets just this year.
Ms. Batts had been diagnosed with schizophrenia.
There are no words to describe this, other than to say: This should never happen. Ever.
Meanwhile, Connecticut’s Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced yesterday that the state is now able to match every person who has been verified as chronically homeless to permanent housing.
According to Journey Home:
One challenge we still face in our region is that on average, about 11 people per month are becoming chronically homeless in Greater Hartford. In addition, Journey Home has identified a number of people who appear likely to be chronically homeless, and thus, we are continuously working with our partner agencies on completing the documentation necessary to verify their chronic homelessness.
Posted in Homelessness
Tagged Dannel P. Malloy, Death, Froze, Greater Hartford, Homeless, Journey Home, Karen Batts, Oregon, Parking garage, Permanent housing, Portland, Schizophrenia
Check out what Journey Home is doing: Offering an aerospace job training program to people who are or have been homeless. And it’s working.
Sal Pina (remember him?) was homeless for 20-some years, and then he got an apartment back in May. And yesterday, a nice guy named Ken made good on a promise he made when Sal’s story ran in the Courant, and he took his fellow Mets fan to a game.
So this is what my friend Sara Capen Salomons posted on Facebook, when I shared the picture of Sal at the game:
Some days are just indescribable. Like the days when I get to witness real life miracles. Sal was sleeping outside when the Mets opened their season. Today? He’s watching them play. And after the game? He’ll sleep in his own bed in his own apartment.
To which I’ll add “Amen,” and “Hell, yeah.”
Given the success of their August Dinner in the Park, where Journey Home partnered with area restaurants to feed roughly 200 hungry people, the non-profit organization is doing it again.
And they could use your help.
Along with Max Downtown in Hartford, Arugula Bistro in West Hartford, and Starbucks Coffee, Journey Home wants to send some people home with a fully belly this Saturday evening in Bushnell Park. And yes, they’re watching the weather carefully, because we’re supposed to continue to get the remnants of Hurricane Joaquin.
But rain or shine, for a suggested donation of $25, you can help feed a neighbor who could really use the meal. Interested? Learn more here.
Efforts continue in Connecticut to house people who have been chronically homeless. Shorty on the left slept under bridges for 14+ years. Shorty on the right slept, for the first time last night, in an apartment of his own. See him holding the key?
You can read more about Shorty on Journey Home’s Facebook page. It is really happening. Dedicated people (hi, Sara!) are ending homelessness in one of the wealthiest states in the union — and when we’ve housed the last person? We’ll be even richer.
My friend Sara Capen Salomons and Journey Home, with the help of some awesome restaurants, fed some 200 people — men, women and children — in Hartford’s historic park.