Louise Berry: Long-Term Housing the Obvious Solution

Thank you for your excellent online newspaper and the well-written informative article by Mary Duan about the downtown Salinas fight. Seems to me we have forgotten about cooperation and compromise to meet all citizens’ concerns. Jumping right to lawyer threats is intimidating and unnecessary.

The church wants to continue helping people. Hurrah. We need more of that. The downtown business community wants to stop loitering in front of their businesses and human waste and used needles all around. Couldn’t agree more.

It seems that the savvy business owners could come up with money (doesn’t hiring lawyers cost money?) to figure out ways to get their needs met without threatening! The city government is filled with knowledgeable folks who should indeed hear all citizens and find ways to make everyone as happy as possible. Lack of money often stymies progress forward.

What if the business community agreed to pay for a city government appointee( someone experienced in mediation) to gather everyone’s input and suggest a long term strategic plan?

What if the church and business community could gather 2-3 volunteers each to serve on the city government appointee’s committee? Some of the people served by the church daily could be interviewed for their perspectives.

The volunteers and members at the church could give needed input about a long term strategic plan. Business owners could be interviewed,

Of course the obvious solution is housing for all. That is a long-term goal for everyone I talk with. How to get there is complicated but doable. Meanwhile folks in need in our communities should not be ignored.

Louise Berry


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