Letter: Action… good luck with that!
In response to James E. Defiance’s letter Wednesday, Oct. 9, in the Post Independent: James I commend you for putting a letter to try to do something about homeless camps, you took action! Good luck on trying to get others to take action.
I have experience with discovering and being up in arms about the homeless camps around Glenwood Springs. Years ago while on a quick hike, I was very upset to find many abandoned homeless camps and some occupied camps with all kinds of trash and disgusting debris left behind. The amount of wasted food in the form of canned goods (that were most likely donated to our local charities) hit home hard with me. I personally made many calls after seeing the amount of camps to various agencies: Glenwood Springs police, the sheriff, the Forest Service and BLM to alert them to my findings and seek help. Unfortunately they are very understaffed and do not have the funds to control the situation.
I decided to call the nonprofits that help homeless people in our area and found there is a cleanup that is done once a year with help from some of the homeless. At the time when I was taking action, Karen from Feed My Sheep in Glenwood Springs was the only community member willing to do anything besides my husband and myself. I spent a lot time creating awareness in the local paper, telling my many friends and 179+ salon/spa clients, and I created posters about a community clean up which I was trying to coordinate with Feed My Sheep’s annual clean up. I also did a Facebook campaign to try to get people to come together to clean up our mountain slides.
I was impressed with the homeless people I met during the clean up with Feed My Sheep. Some responsible homeless people took action in the cleanup and I met some of them being re-educated to get a different job. This was probably about 2008 when many construction workers were out of work because of the Great Recession.
My biggest fear is that someday, someone up in the mountains may cause a forest fire that could devastate many people and homes in our town.
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Maybe we will have a homeless shelter some day, but that is another heated issue as well as addressing mental health issues in our society.
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