Homeless Volunteers Efforts to Follow CDC Guidelines Burdened by Mayor Turner
What is left of late-stage capitalism is being blown to pieces in real time and those who are the most financially vulnerable continue to be left behind. Mayor Sylvester Turner continues to thwart efforts of volunteers to keep the homeless community fed and safe.
Food Not Bombs-Houston has been serving the homeless community at the library, but in order to maintain the CDC guidelines the group moved to Hermann Square. The CDC guidelines recommends people stay six feet apart from each other and for people to have prevention supplies. The guidelines also state to cancel large events. However, with shelters and homeless organizations being closed, it opens more vulnerabilities of spreading the virus for the homeless community since they have zero resources to maintain basic hygienic standards or self-isolate.
Hermann Square is right in front of City Hall and provided better logistics and view of the homeless community to maintain everyone at the safe distance. At the library, the view of the 100+ becomes obstructed with buildings and the line having to go around the block.
Despite Hermann Square being a public park for public use, Mayor Sylvester Turner told Food Not Bombs-Houston that they could no longer serve there. It’s not enough that the city has not provided prevention supplies or helped homeless shelters and orgs, they continue to thwart any effort to help the homeless.
After weeks of emails from Food Not Bombs-Houston, it was only a couple of days ago that the city put in more portable toilets and hand-washing stations. The daily food distribution done by the volunteers for the homeless relies on basic sanitation and support from the city to keep everyone safe from COVID-19. So far, the volunteers haven’t received any additional aid from the city besides portable toilets and hand-washing stations.
What You Can Do to Help
Sign and share this petition by Pantsuit Republic — Houston.
Call and email Mayor Turner and the city’s homeless liaison.
Phone: 311 or 713.837.0311
Mayor’s Office for Homeless Initiatives