To the editor:
Mayor Bill de Blasio is so useless that even when he comes up with a good idea, he doesn’t have the capability or common sense to effectively implement it. Such is the case when it comes to moving homeless people out of shelters and into hotel rooms.
It seemed reasonable enough. Homeless people crowded together in shelters is even more of a problem during a pandemic. That same pandemic has resulted in many empty hotel rooms. Homeless people get rooms. Hotel owners get income.
But screening homeless people so that you move those who are honest and not problematic was too logical for de Blasio. His homeless services department spokesman Isaac McGinn twists logic into a pretzel by saying “the city cannot tell certain New Yorkers based on your background or prior experience you cannot live here. That would be unlawful discrimination.”
Really? Is it discrimination when you put criminals in prison?
The majority of homeless who only got into their predicament because they couldn’t afford a raise in rent due to their poverty wages, or who lost their jobs, or who got burnt out of their homes, or simply aren’t paid enough to afford housing, don’t get priority over criminals for hotel rooms?
Meanwhile, people in what has been a good Midtown Manhattan neighborhood suddenly have to deal with thefts, aggressive panhandling, people spitting in their food, and harassment.
De-institutionalization should be reversed so that the mentally ill homeless can be treated in hospitals.
Those who suffer from mental illness need help and sympathy since they have problems they didn’t create or have control over. But the ones whose issues are so serious they can’t take care of themselves are not being treated humanely by being dumped out of hospitals and being told they must care for themselves when they cannot.
Appropriate housing for criminals is available at Rikers Island.
Good people who behave responsibly and who are able to take care of themselves should get hotel rooms.
Anybody with more sense than de Blasio realizes that if you bring dangerous people from the shelters to the hotels, the hotels become dangerous.
On Aug. 17, de Blasio announced that, in the future, the homeless will be moved out of hotels and back to the shelters. This does not help the non-criminal homeless.