Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Van Bramer was homeless as a baby

From the Daily News:

...my parents got on the subway to a welfare office downtown, a ride they never thought they’d have to take.

My family’s journey into and out of homelessness began like so many others then and now. Dad was drinking heavily, money got tight, some poor decisions were made, and a family teetered on the brink of despair as a result.

...the city sent us to the Hotel Kimberly uptown. It was an awful place at the time, with rats in our room and constant break-ins. My father slept in a chair leaned up against the door to the room while the rest of us slept in the same bed. We lived in that hotel and under those conditions for six weeks.

My dad said he had no way to get us to a new apartment even if we found one.

All human beings have a right to shelter. Some may say that’s feel-good liberalism run amok, but in the City of New York, it happens to be the law. We must house our homeless, and that means finding places for families like mine to live and begin again.

In some cases, that will mean new shelters in neighborhoods that have not seen them before.

A cynic will say that throwing more money at the homeless is a waste. I disagree. Because it’s not just about a lot of money, it’s about a little bit of hope.

________________________________________

Now, take a good look at the amazing B.S. posted above. The family managed to ride the subway to a welfare office, but had no way to get to a new apartment, if found?

Jimmy's father drank heavily, and even though he was employed, he pissed away the family's money and then pissed off the relatives they were bunking with, and they ended up homeless. This was a self-made problem. They then lived in a shitty hotel in awful conditions.

And what is Jimmy's brilliant idea? Kick more money over to the likes of Samaritan Village et al, so they can open equally shitty hotels to house the families of modern-day drunks.

No solution is presented with regard to dealing with addiction, no solution presented with regard to providing permanent housing, no solution is presented with regard to perhaps moving people to areas of the country that they can actually afford on low wages.

Nope, communities better just like the fact that more popup homeless shelters are coming, and Jimmy is fine with shoveling our money at them. Somehow I think he'd have a problem if they opened one in Sunnyside Gardens. After all, he had a problem with the storage of firetrucks next to a park.
And why is he pictured posing in front of a church instead of at the Pan Am where you can see bunk beds pushed up against the windows and underwear draped over the window guards? Is he afraid of being questioned about why these mandated accommodations cost taxpayers $4,000 per month, which is a whole lot more than an apartment in his district?

40 comments:

Anonymous said...

Let's dissect further:

"Of course, the root of homelessness is poverty"

Only true for some, Jimmy. And for those people, a voucher system would fine, except you'd come up with 100 reasons why it wouldn't because no one could get kickbacks, tweed, and photo-ops.


"All human beings have a right to shelter"

Let's get this straight: they have a NEED FOR shelter, not a RIGHT TO shelter. It's an important distinction which of course can't win JVB any votes.

Anonymous said...

They do here.

http://www.coalitionforthehomeless.org/our-programs/advocacy/legal-victories/the-callahan-legacy-callahan-v-carey-and-the-legal-right-to-shelter/

In August 1981, after nearly two years of intensive negotiations between the plaintiffs and the government defendants, Callahan v. Carey was settled as a consent decree. By entering into the decree, the City and State agreed to provide shelter and board to all homeless men who met the need standard for welfare or who were homeless “by reason of physical, mental, or social dysfunction.” Thus the decree established a right to shelter for all homeless men in New York City

Queens Crapper said...

Yes, and of course, no one changed the law to match those of other states so that there is a residency requirement to collect benefits and for shelter. So you have people packing their bags, taking buses to the PA and walking to the first hospital ER they see and demanding benefits.

Anonymous said...

Wouldn't it have to be a constitutional amendment?

Queens Crapper said...

What if it does? What the hell else do they do up there?

Anonymous said...

The Pan Am Shotel is a community eyesore already and has that ghetto trash look.

Anonymous said...

The photo says it all. These people don't know how to live in a respectable or civilized manner. You don't hang underwear in the window !

Joe Moretti said...

WOW, what a load of Crapolla!!

"My family’s journey into and out of homelessness began like so many others then and now. Dad was drinking heavily, money got tight, some poor decisions were made, and a family teetered on the brink of despair as a result."

NO NO NO, that it not all like some any others, not even close. Most fathers are not drunks and most do not make poor decisions, whatever they entail.

"In some cases, that will mean new shelters in neighborhoods that have not seen them before."

So then start on Park Avenue (not aware of any homeless shelters there), Battery City, on de Blasio's block and your block Danny Boy.

Funny how they say in neighborhoods that have not seen them before, but NEVER in their hoods or blocks. No, can't have those there.

Anonymous said...

You don't hang underwear in a window. You use a clothesline. Can the city provide clotheslines for the guests?

Yes, that's JVB posing in front a Catholic Church, in which he can't be a full participant because of his orientation.

His story fails to describe what happened after his family found a new home. How did they manage to keep it? Did his father quit drinking, perhaps he found work? It needs a follow-up.

Anonymous said...

I agree - every community including SSG and especially LIC should get shelters and now that such an idea is out perhaps someone can run with it - that issue is low hanging fruit folks!

Afterall, Jimmy is for those places considering he is a product and look what a success he is.

Middle Villager said...

Does "social dysfunction" include those who just do not want to work? Here in NYC it seems that we won the "social dysfunction" jackpot. Everyone can use a hand up now and then but the City is gearing up for permanent "hand outs". Maybe we should give them bus tickets to Albany since they are the ones who got us into this mess.

Anonymous said...

Homeless Shelters..."if you build it they will come".

Anonymous said...

His story fails to describe what happened after his family found a new home. How did they manage to keep it? Did his father quit drinking, perhaps he found work? It needs a follow-up.

His father found work in one of John Liu's sweatshops.

Anonymous said...

He should get together with John Liu, who said his mother raised him by working in a sweatshop.

Anonymous said...

He should get together with John Liu, who said his mother raised him by working in a sweatshop.

Liu's mother has repeatedly debunked her son's claim that she brought him to work in a sweatshop, but he still repeats the same story over and over. I think his mother is the only honest member of the family.

Anonymous said...

Crapper, it seems obvious what's going on here: a PR campaign for the hearts & minds crowd, while huge sums of money are being shifted between politicians and realtors masquerading as homeless organizations. What's scary is that beyond sites like this, these efforts show no signs of abating. Amazing how boldfaced and disingenuous!!!

Queens Crapper said...

Correct. The shelter didn't help his family one lick. His father happened to meet a kindhearted person.

Anonymous said...

Those in the know will always trade in the emotions, and they are of course pros at it. One has to play the game very carefully, or get caught being labeled NIMBYs, reactionaries, or racists, as has been the case in the Pan Am fallout. COMET fucked that up big time.

Anonymous said...

COMET did not authorize those signs and their message was on point the entire time about shelters being warehouses that make slumlord orgs rich. If the press wants to cherrypick 2 protesters out of 1000 and make it look like the whole group hates the homeless then that's what they will do. They only care about what sells papers, not the truth.

Anonymous said...

I know that COMET did not intend to send such a message. What I'm saying is that the hearts & minds crowd only needs to do just that--find one incendiary sign or chant and use it to advance a narrative. The initial DNA Info story is a perfect example. It almost read like propaganda.

COMET needed to be very careful around the time of that first protest, and they unfortunately weren't. Now, anyone who speaks out against the shelter is "mean" or "uncaring." WIN=Samaritan Village. Meanwhile, I work in the area and can attest first hand that there are real problems that have arisen as a result of the place.

It's that sort of stuff I'm talking about. The tactics have to go up a notch if they're ever going to get through all the bullshit trigger words.

Anonymous said...

It wasn't the first protest that triggered it, it was the second, which wasn't even held at the shelter. The whole thing was ridiculous. You have people living in the shelter complaining about the conditions and Van Bramer comes out and says his conditions were bad, but we should continue to throw money down the toilet. If people were actually paying attention they might be outraged.

Anonymous said...

Jimmy's father drank heavily, and even though he was employed, he pissed away the family's money and then pissed off the relatives they were bunking with, and they ended up homeless. This was a self-made problem. They then lived in a shitty hotel in awful conditions.

Wow.

You know, I understand disagreeing with a politician or a policy and getting angry about it, but don't crap on someone's past like that.

Queens Crapper said...

Why not? Was the description not truthful? When you go public with personal info in order to further an agenda, expect to attract scrutiny.

Anonymous said...

Why not? Was the description not truthful? When you go public with personal info in order to further an agenda, expect to attract scrutiny.

I don't care in what context he used his story, unless you're suggesting he made it all up. Your description was harsh; it trivialized something we wouldn't wish on our worst enemy. You should have taken the high road, maybe balanced out your reasonable opposition to homeless shelters with just a little bit, an iota of sympathy, for Van Bramer's story.

But knowing you and having read your blog for years, I know you tend to avoid the high road, even when it's the best way to travel to get people to support your arguments.

Queens Crapper said...

Yes, I believe his story is B.S. And every other commenter save for you is leaning in that direction. His goal was to make people feel sorry for those in shelters, and he failed to do that. What hardship could he have possibly endured as an infant who can't remember anything? The Daily News commenters weren't buying it, either. I say what I think and really don't care if my style offends.

Anonymous said...

Yes, I believe his story is B.S. And every other commenter save for you is leaning in that direction. His goal was to make people feel sorry for those in shelters, and he failed to do that. What hardship could he have possibly endured as an infant who can't remember anything? The Daily News commenters weren't buying it, either. I say what I think and really don't care if my style offends.

So let me get this straight... you're relying on Daily News website commenters as your moral compass here? That's sad.

Queens Crapper said...

No, I'm relying on my bullshit detector. Now go play in traffic.

Joe Moretti said...

Why now come out with this hard luck story after all of these years and just now we are hearing it. Also he makes it clear his family was only in it for six weeks. What is the time frame of the majority of folks in these shelters, I highly doubt six weeks.

Whether this story is completely true or not, Van Bramer is using this for sympathy votes and to push the agenda of sticking homeless shelters on every corner of New York, except in certain neighborhoods like his and other leaders.

But if this story is true, they were in a shelter for a short period of time, unlike many of these folks who use it as some form of permanent housing. I mean why would someone from one of the other states, which have much lower costs of living move to New York City, the most expensive city in the country to plop down in shelter.

Please you have takers and then you have TAKERS. Too many of these folks in shelters are TAKERS, they have never learned to stand on their two feet at all. Why go to a shelter here when you could easily go to another state with a much much lower cost of living and more than likely not live in a shelter.

Something is mighty wrong with this whole system, the city is not being too truthful about what is really going on or the reason that people from out of state (and less expensive states) are coming to NYC to plop in a shelter.

And as you can see from the one photo, the former hotel is already looking like shit, imagine it 6 months down the road.

Again, there are many other states with low costs of living, plenty of jobs especially for the type of people in these places and much more affordable housing than in NYC.

Something is very very wrong with this whole thing.

Let's all be honest here, homeless shelters are the new big business, just like prisons.

Anonymous said...

Joe a lot of people have all their friends and family living in NYC. They don't want to leave. And as much as you and crappy would like them to, I don't see popular support for such a measure, especially when so many are struggling to make rent, and some do leave, there will be a lot of sympathy for the poor and middle class who want to stay.

A lot of homeless were living with those friends and family, like in one of those houses you hate with a dozen or more people living in it, until bloomberg started a rent subsidy program for those in shelters. They moved out of the overcrowded house or apartment and into a shelter to get in line, because that was the only way for them to get their own place. They were never in a position to support themselves because the cost of housing has skyrocketed do to zoning restrictions, and most 'affordable' housing built under bloomberg was targeted at the middle-upper middle class. Now many of them are moving back into shelters because the rent subsidy program is gone. Some may expect it to be restarted, and that living in a shelter isn't all the much worse than doubling or tripling up with a friend or relative who may come to resent them. Living in a shelter may get them to the front of the line so to speak in a restarted in subsidy program.

And to answer your question, the average stay in a shelter is about a year now, maybe a little longer. It dropped to 250 days under the rapid rehousing initiative under bloomberg before the rent subsidy program was ended.

Anonymous said...

Joe only a small share of the homeless come from out of the city. About 10% of families with children, 13% of adult families, don't see for single adults though, but they are a small part of the homeless population anyway. And that's just the last address. It counts all those who tried to live elsewhere, even for a few months, before returning to their home city.

It's a homegrown problem more than anything.

http://www.nyc.gov/html/dhs/downloads/pdf/dashboard/tables/intake_Tbls_Dbd_6-10-2014.pdf

Queens Crapper said...

How cute. And here's reality:

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/out-of-town-homeless-families-flooding-new-york-city-shelters-article-1.1125381

http://nypost.com/2013/04/01/thank-you-very-mooch-nyc/

Anonymous said...

And what's happening now July13-Mar14 8771 families entered the system. 929 last lived either outside NYC or had no address entered. Less than the 964 from Queens

For every family coming from elsewhere you have 8 from NYC. It's mostly a homegrown problem.

Anonymous said...

Boo fuckin' hoo!

Anonymous said...

The city makes up its stats. The Queens Chronicle had a story last week and the people interviewed were all from out of state.

Queens Crapper said...

Ah, arguing over stats. That's pretty pointless. The main issue here is that the shelter system is complete shit and slumlord organizations are making money hand over fist at the expense of taxpayers and the people they are sheltering.

Anonymous said...

Joe only a small share of the homeless come from out of the city. About 10% of families with children, 13% of adult families, don't see for single adults though, but they are a small part of the homeless population anyway. And that's just the last address. It counts all those who tried to live elsewhere, even for a few months, before returning to their home city.

It's a homegrown problem more than anything.

http://www.nyc.gov/html/dhs/downloads/pdf/dashboard/tables/intake_Tbls_Dbd_6-10-2014.pdf


Highly misleading. All this reports is what people put down on the intake form. It does not account for how many of these people stayed with a NYC friend or relative - however briefly - or how many flat out lied, as the agency probably isn't checking, as according to that table it accepts forms that are missing an address altogether.

The law has simply GOT to be changed to require at least a year of residency, provable by a landlord, tax documents, voting records, school records, or something else with binding authority.

Joe Moretti said...

Anon stated:

It's a homegrown problem more than anything.

_____________
No it fucking isn't, many times it is a personal problem of making bad choices, not taking responsibility or poor planning. Yes, sometimes bad things happen (lose a job, a medical procedure drains your savings, etc), but going to a homeless shelter seems to be the final step, which means there were several other options before that, that were not taken or ignored. You do not become homeless overnight, it is a long process.

You don't make that much money and have one child, DON'T have three. Responsible people only have as many kids as they can afford. You don't make much money, you live in a city or state where the cost of living is not so high, regardless of where you family or friends are (they obviously did not want you staying at their home forever). Again this is a choice and people do this all of the time and having been doing this since the advent of travel. Our immigrant families did it in the 1800's coming to America. My grandparents left their friends and families to never see them again to begin a new and better life in the USA.

There are choices in life, good ones and bad ones, but you have choices. This thinking that I hear from a few are making people victims as opposed to being responsible for themselves. Damn, we live in this pussy ass times, that make no one responsible for themselves and blames everyone and everything else. The reason we are in the shape we are in.

Anonymous said...

Van Bramer is exhibit A of what is wrong with our elected officials, which increasingly seems little more than an employment agency for B and D listers.

Everyone had great hope for him - on the surface polished, urbane, able to form cogent sentences: brief conversation with him puts him in an entirely different light than what passes for 'leadership' out in these parts.

Then he got in office.

The power has gone to his head - he has a reputation as a publicity hog, has a chip on his shoulder, and has managed to embody the worse of Bloomberg and DiBlasio administrations. His switch from Quinn to Melissa was not only blinding fast, but displays his lack of morals and scruples. Anyone that can further his career is important, anyone that lacks juice can be talked down to or ignored.

This man is making enemies left and right. That library thing, where he got schooled in public service, is going to blow up in his face.

JQ said...

Van B is either willfully oblivious or a sociopath.what is certain is that he is a shallow cretin with chum for brains and his advice to people that are not generation gentrification to stop complaining is brazen hypocrisy at its worst.

and his inspirational article in the daily news just shows how doomed the affordable housing plan is going to wind up,there are a lot of motels in this city that are going to be extra crowded in the next 10 years.

Snake Plissskin said...

You know JQ, I am looking at all those hotels in LIC....

No operator gets from guests what the city pays to house homeless Democrats.