Tuesday, October 11, 2016
City Hall tries to fool public into thinking that filling a shelter means that Maspeth "won"
The city has ruled it won't turn the Maspeth Holiday Inn Express into a full homeless shelter because its ardent opposition but locals are still furious homeless men were snuck in without any notification.
"One of the changes I wanted to make was to create a process in which we open shelters and we give the community notification," NYC Homeless Services Commissioner Steven Banks said during an August 11 community meeting in Maspeth, where tempers flared over the proposed conversation of the Holiday Inn Express off the Long Island Expressway.
On Monday, residents were out on full force again as they have been for nearly every night in the last two months. But this evening was unlike any other as the city quietly moved in 25 homeless men.
Bryan Barnwell, a Democratic nominee for the 30th District, watched the entire process unfold Monday at approximately 2:30 p.m.
"I said to myself this looks kind've fishy so I investigated," Barnwell said. "We go to back entrance and go to the back of property to see what's going on and I see an empty van there with 10 people in it. They were adult males."
Barnwell believes the city snuck homeless men "100 percent."
The Department of Homeless Services responded to the protests in a statement to PIX11.
"Due to local opposition to housing homeless New Yorkers, we have not been able to convert this site into a full shelter at this time. We are renting rooms for employed single adults and providing onsite services and security."
Holiday Inn Express management had no comment in response to the city moving homeless adults into the hotel.
Ok folks, lets translate what is going on here. Carefully read the city's quote: "we have not been able to convert this site into a full shelter at this time", and zone in on the phrase "at this time".
This says in a sneaky way that the city has no plans of abandoning its plan to make this entire hotel a shelter. They are starting with 30 individuals, and will build it up slowly until a good portion of the shelter is filled. And not with "adult couples" as was told to the residents of Maspeth, but with single males. Note also how they emphasized that those males will be "employed" but fail to mention the substance abuse problems expected (which their job ads indicate will be something to deal with). Then we'll see a contract submitted for a permanent shelter, and the Holiday Inn sign will come down.
Spinning it to make it seem like the community "won" allows the press to get their clickbait for a day, while confusing readers into thinking this is somehow "over".
It doesn't appear that the good people of Maspeth have fallen for it, however. According to most reports, the protests are set to continue, and several road trips are in the works.
In recent years, we've lived through 5 terms of Mike Bloomberg and Rudy Giuliani combined, and over all that time, haven't seen anything like the propaganda and lies put forth in 3 short years under this mayor. It's truly astounding.