Monday, February 19, 2018
Homeless behavior is causing problems all over the city
From the Daily News:
The Daily News spent three months looking at life in neighborhoods with large numbers of shelter beds, documenting the cost these residents pay by shouldering a disproportionate share of the city’s collective burden.
The News found they often face a wide variety of challenges: verbal harassment and physical assaults; stoops used as bathrooms; outdoor flowerpots used to hide knives; prostitution and drug dealing; newly arrived gentrifiers unable to tell the difference between some longtime homeowners and shelter residents; real estate brokers warning that property values fall when new shelters are announced nearby; and a pastor who lost half his congregation after a parishioner was raped by homeless youths from a nearby shelter.
From the Daily News:
All along Queens Boulevard the Department of Homeless Services has placed homeless in one hotel after another. Residents believe two more are coming soon based on building permits touting new “hotel/apartment residences.”
Watchful residents complain about a history of complaints over incidents involving these hotels-turned-shelters, from prostitution to physical assaults.
Between 2013 and 2017, there have been 809 calls to 311 about homeless assistance in the two zip codes with the bulk of the hotels: 11377 and 11373.
Those two zip codes far outstrip all others in Queens for calls about the homeless.
On Jan. 4, the Department of Investigation revealed prostitution and drug arrests at 34 hotels where the city places homeless families. Twelve of those hotels are located in Queens, the report said.
Exhibit No. 1 cited by frustrated locals is the Pan Am Hotel.
Four months after the mayor’s promise to cut back on shelter-hotels, the city re-upped its contract with the nonprofit that manages a family shelter in the Pan Am — extending it through 2023.
Longtime homeowner Sally Wang, a member of Elmhurst United, a group pushing to close the Pan Am, said the new contract with DHS is just the latest insult to arrive from City Hall.
“What we’re finding is a lot of homeowners are selling out because of the shelter,” she said. “They don’t want to be near the shelter. They’re selling to investor owners who don’t live here and that starts the deterioration of the whole neighborhood. And it's worse now that the contract is in for six years.”
Violence at shelters has been redefined by the de Blasio administration.
And here's what Billionaire's Row has to look forward to.