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Archive for Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Shelter options

March 2, 2004

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To the editor:

In response to the Salvation Army's political quarter-page ad on neighborhood concerns relating to their Haskell location:

1. The route homeless will choose between downtown and Haskell Avenue: The T may provide adequate transportation, but it does not run throughout the night. What is their policy regarding obviously drunken individuals? The Salvation Army will not accept such patrons -- not even when sub-zero temperatures prevail. Where's the compassion?

2. Late night police concerns are directed primarily downtown. Experience tells us that, unless there is violent activity, the Lawrence Police Department is not likely to respond quickly to a call regarding an intoxicated homeless person in someone's back yard or on the walking trail. This department is routinely short-staffed.

3. East Heights is not as much a concern as are the routes the East Lawrence Recreation Center, Boys and Girls Club, Kennedy, New York and Central Junior High students choose.

4. Property value concerns by the property owners most directly affected were not addressed.

5. Most recently, Richard Forney was making known that establishments retailing alcohol were an acute concern. Approximate distances were measured from the new site: 550 feet to a convenience store, 725 to a liquor store and 825 to the Crosstown Bar, a daytime and late-night establishment. Why would the Salvation Army choose this site?

The Salvation Army's estimated budget of $4.2 million could likely purchase a sizeable portion of the Tanger Mall. The Liz Claiborne building would provide nice gym space for North Lawrence with other sites available for training space, housing, food bank and chapel.

Beth Anne Mansur,

Lawrence

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