Thursday, May 19, 2016

Confusion, Fear, and Displacement

Here's an update from what's going on downtown from earlier in the week. Although BSO is indeed patrolling Broward Central Terminal, they have not taken over at the library (so far).

So far, it does not appear that BSO is taking a friendlier approach to homeless people in the terminal...if anything, its the opposite. Many people could be observed on Thursday being chased out of the terminal by BSO officers for "loitering."

Another development is that County outreach staff have been coming to the Stranahan area offering Rapid Re-Housing services. This is actually great news...and yet is a bit strange as there is very little money for this fund and little if any of it is usually allocated to the chronically homeless in the area who do not have children, aren't vets, etc. So, another as-yet unresolved mystery.

So far, no County, City, or police officials or spokespeople have clarified anything written earlier in the week or anything new posted here today. There are no press releases or new stories, save what is written here, and the word on the street.

The murkiness has led a lot of confusion and fear downtown. Many other unconnected occurrences have given the false impression that there's even worse things afoot. After the pressure-washing of the Stranahan sidewalk earlier in the week, the pay meters along that street were bagged off on Thursday. However it turned out the reason for that was that a car commercial that was shooting on that street...still, without any meaningful communication from anyone in the know, it created yet another strong impression that the sidewalks were being rolled up. There was also a meeting at the Women's Club on Thursday about traffic patterns that led to even more speculation that City fat cats were plotting still more attacks on the people downtown.

Really, this is just a glimpse of what it's like to be homeless downtown...nobody tells you shit. No matter what people are planning right next to these people's beds, they are almost never seen as human enough to extend the same courtesy that the wealthy people of Fort Lauderdale are sure to give to one another.

In spite of all this, there are some dark days going on downtown, with displacement being the name of the game. Placing homeless people in services is always right, but when the true goal, the true motive, is to achieve the impossible by permanently clearing the streets of Fort Lauderdale...public scrutiny and discourse is always necessary.
We urge everyone to keep their eyes the ongoings of downtown Fort Lauderdale...when we get more news, we will pass it on.

No comments:

Post a Comment