Homeless problem needed tackling

By BRYAN DAVIS EDITOR,

In the past year, there have been multiple individuals who have come into The E-T office, seeking food or money, and in most of these cases, the people claimed to be homeless.

I have no reason to doubt the stories they told me.

But as a business operator, there is only so much I and others can do.

That is why it is refreshing to see a strong group of community leaders are coming together in order to try and combat the homeless problem in Sunflower County.

In a front page article in last week’s edition, The E-T detailed how many of the homeless people in Indianola deal with a wide range of problems, ranging from alcoholism to mental illness.

It is a shame that folks can fall so deep into alcoholism as to be shunned by their own families, but that is a reality in many cases.

Family members want to shield children from these situations, and they are often the victims of theft from these alcoholic relatives.

If the safety nets of family and church are not there, hopefully this effort, led by the Sunflower County Ministerial Alliance, can help these individuals find both shelter and help for their problems.

The strong voices of District 31 Rep. Otis Anthony II and recently-elected District 3 Supervisor Ben Gaston should lend even more credibility to the much-needed project.

Addressing the problems of the homeless not only helps those who live without shelter every night, but it also keeps potentially dangerous individuals off the streets and gets them the help they desperately need.

Many of the homeless are not dangerous.

In fact, I’ve never felt threatened by anyone who has visited The E-T, seeking a handout, but we know that mental problems do exist and will persist in a great number of the homeless if left unaddressed.

Kudos to the Ministerial Alliance and its support group in the community for tackling this problem.

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