NEWS BLOG (WSAU)
As you might imagine, there’s always going to be a ‘not-in-my-backyard’
component to anything involving the homeless. The NIMBY’s are right on one
point and wrong on another. The argue, correctly, that the new location on
But there’s a weakness to this argument. It’s the ‘light use’ of a warming shelter. This isn’t a full-blown homeless shelter with rooms, bunk beds, meals and showers. Instead it’s intended as a place for people to warm up if they’re on the streets for cold winter nights. They sit in a plush chair and can have some coffee or hot chocolate. That means fewer people, arriving later, and staying shorter. All of those factors minimize the warming center’s impact on neighbors.
This is a close call, but I still think this is the wrong
location. For me, it comes down to where the homeless are. They’re downtown.
And that’s where the warming center should be. If you’re going to offer social
services, you put them where the users are going to be. You don’t do the homeless any
favors if you tell them there’s some help available across the bridge, two blocks
over, and then down two blocks. The old warming center, in the basement of