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Re: “Chapel Hill NIMBYs oppose new homeless shelter site

Story Published: Mar 21, 2008 at 6:11 PM EDT There's an effort to clean-up an Augusta neighborhood plagued with crime. On Wednesday, a man was shot and killed inside his home in Harrisburg. A 12-year-old boy and a man are charged with his murder. Butch Palmer has called Augusta's Harrisburg community home for all of his life. He says within the last year or so a lot has changed and not for the good. He blames it on a homeless day shelter opening in the neighborhood. "It's a known fact that homeless people are down and out on their luck. Down out and people do desperate things," Palmer said. Fed up with what he calls riff raff invading Harrisburg, Palmer formed a neighborhood organization called Hong Kong Augusta. "It's Harrisburg Organization Networking for Gentrification to Keep Our Neighborhood From Becoming A Ghetto," he said. Palmer says his groups mission is to clean-up the neighborhood, ridding it of drugs, prostitution and homeless vagrants. He says it won't happen until the shelter is dealt with. "We'd like to see them relocated or shut down because of the negative effects," Palmer said.

Sex offenders roaming city homeless shelters Thursday, August 23rd 2007, 4:00 AM Convicted sex offenders are living alongside children and their families in homeless shelters throughout the city, a report released yesterday revealed. The report - based on data collected from the state's sex offender registry - indicated that six pedophiles recently were living in family shelters in Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx. The offenders named in the study have all committed egregious acts against minors between 5 and 16 years old, according to the report released by state Sen. Jeff Klein (D-Bronx).

I would like to invite your attention to a study on the location of homeless shelters done by the City of Gilroy in California as per which undesirable factors for a shelter's location include nearness to another shelter, nearness to common facilities like parks, nearness to residential areas etc. all of which are applicable in the instant case.

As you are aware a large proportion of the homeless are not homeless by choice but due to other factors such as substance abuse,mental illnesses, depression, criminal behavior etc. and housing a large number of people with such behavioral tendencies in the midst of a residential area without adequate thought or planning as to how to manage other issues such as crime prevention, littering, loitering etc. would create more problems than it would solve.

Planning in a democracy is a consultative process involving the community. The community needs social services but great care and thought has to be put into its location so as to equitably serve the community without creating problems in the existing social fabric of residential areas. Disproportionate location of a large number of social service facilities in North West Chapel Hill alone would not server all the residents of Chapel Hill and we already have Freedom House and a shelter for Women as well as an Old Age Home in our neighborhood.

There are also legal, taxation and financial issues involved. Any depression in the property values would affect both homeowners and the Town adversely. There are also legal and liability issues involved in housing a large population of homeless people

Posted by parkside on 10/23/2009 at 5:09 PM

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