Seeking practical solutions for homeless

This time of year, every year, we hear a lot about homelessness, both pros and cons. Both sides make some good arguments, but neither side has made any headway in solving this issue.

Perhaps the focus on homelessness needs to be narrowed just a bit. While it's true that there are hard-core homeless folks out there that have absolutely no interest in becoming employed and housed, there is a segment that would jump at the chance.

There are those in our community that, through no fault of their own have found themselves homeless. Loss of jobs due to the economy, illness or simply being under-employed may have contributed to their situation.

They might not be sleeping in a tent behind Safeway, but rather couch-surfing with friends and/or family, or sleeping in their cars, either way they are still homeless. These folks are referred to as "warm homeless."

Many warm homeless are children, too. These are the people that ought to be the focus of an ending homelessness program.

Many might say that that's why we have Social Services or other governmental agencies, and those people need to avail themselves of those services. I don't think it's a news flash to anyone that many of those services have fallen under the ax as California attempts to balance the budget.

So where does that leave us? What about a coalition of churches, human services non-profits, concerned citizens and governmental agencies? It's been said that, "It takes a village to raise a child." Perhaps it will take a village to end at least a portion of the homeless issue that faces our community.

Can we in good faith continue to hide our collective heads in the sand or staunchly proclaim, "Not in my back yard!"

This could be a great opportunity to make a positive impact on our community. This would be a ground-breaking endeavor, at least in our community. I'd love to see leaders from churches, non-profits, concerned citizens, and social services put their differences aside, step up and make a difference in the lives of people that are and will be productive members of society with just a little help. Food for thought.

Sandy Jay Blakely, Crescent City

Gov't without a heart: Emergency response fee

Crescent City Council, you can't be serious about slapping a $425 basic fee into the hands of an unfortunate family for sending an emergency response team of firefighters to their fully engaged home in which they lose everything they have acquired in their lifetime, are you?

Or how about the fender bender that results in a freak lethality? Either party involved will be emotionally overwrought ... would a sharp stick in the eye, in the form of a fee/fine, be a winner for Crescent City?

Government without a heart is what would institute such measures. Don't we already have enough of that? Why bring it home?

This much I can say: If I were a Crescent City resident, I would haunt the Council meetings, every one, until this idea is abandoned.

Dale L. Bohling, Crescent City