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84 units for homeless people at 1st & Cedar

from DJC

Plymouth Housing Group is holding a ground-breaking ceremony next Thursday in Belltown for A.L. Humphrey House, an apartment building for chronically homeless people who suffer from mental illness and other disabilities.

I’m curious of what your thoughts are concerning this development? It’s not the first, as you can see from taking a look at Plymouth’s existing list of developments.  I personally believe that getting chronically homeless people off the streets and into a stable environment is a step in the right direction. This form of stability should serve to pacify some of the desperate behavior that can be a result of trying to survive in the harsness of the streets.

However, incidents like this one leave me deeply unsettled. It is not enough to simply “house” mentally insane people. I believe this is just a bandage on a festering wound. People with serious mental issues need serious mental care, attention, follow-up, and supervision.  Methodically housing them in a high density area isn’t going to fix the problem and in turn endangers the community as a whole.

4 Comments on "84 units for homeless people at 1st & Cedar"

  1. I’ve lived next to the El Rey for 19 years and I definitely have mixed feelings about such a project. On the one hand, it’s good to know that the mentally ill are being taken care of. On the other, some of the El Rey’s tenants are so far gone that they really bring down the quality of life for everyone else on the block. We’re talking compulsive panhandling, rooting around in the garbage and just plain bein’ crazy in public. Seattle is a city with an amazing lack of foresight, so I’m sure that once the building is built, they’ll conclude that their whole approach was wrong and turn it into something else.

  2. JoshMahar | May 29, 2009 at 11:41 am |

    I think these are great as long as they are kept to a minimum in the neighborhoods. Obviously Belltown is a bit overly saturated already and having mentally unstable individuals out on these streets is perhaps the worst environment for them. I think it would be better to keep these spread out amongst neighborhoods. This way the community will understand the need for these facilities and will be much more likely to volunteer and help out with the residents.

  3. I’m going to dedicate some more time to really dig into this project. I think mentally unsound people roaming the streets is the absolute worst option. I would assume that unstable environements lead to even more unstable people. Perhaps people having a reliable place to sleep at night will really help the healing process.

    However, I totally agree with Josh in the fact that there’s a saturation point. What’s that point for a neighborhood? How is Plymouth going to manage the people living in their building so they’re not a threat to the neighborhood?

  4. Wow. Seriously bad news for the neighborhood. We have enough substance abusers and crazies now.

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