Thursday, October 08, 2015
Recently an organization called Raising the Roof posted a sign on a storefront in Toronto's toney Leaside neighbourhood announcing the future site of a homeless shelter. http://www.raisingtheroof.org/ They did it to draw attention to homelessness and how we perceive and react to it when we are comfortably middle class. They installed a secret camera to capture what was on peoples' faces when they read the sign. There was a strongly NIMBY response and some area residents were offended that they were duped. Get over yourselves people!
As I have mentioned, poverty hasn't been a debate issue at all during this election and locally neither the Conservative or Green candidates bothered to show for the debate on poverty. During that debate one candidate made reference to the homeless shelter which has been discussed ad nauseum in Belleville but never realized.
There are homeless persons in this town although we tend not to see them. One couch surfer was in this morning looking for assistance and she said she slept on Front St. last night. I have noticed people sleeping along the water on my morning cycle to Bridge St and I've wondered what I should do.
Saturday is World Homeless Day and I hope we all ask what can be different in our communities and what our congregations are doing to address homelessness.