City Council Challenging NYC Homeless Shelter Policy

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — The New York City Council has authorized a lawsuit to prevent a homeless shelter policy from taking effect.

LISTEN: WCBS 880’s Rich Lamb reports

The policy would require single adults looking for shelter to prove they have nowhere else to go. The council voted to authorize the lawsuit during a meeting Tuesday.

“And send people away who may have been sleeping on friend’s floors or couches for months on end,” said Council Speaker Christine Quinn, who calls the policy “cruel and punitive.”

Advocates for the homeless are also upset about the proposal.

“In the single adult system, you have a much higher rate of mental illness and other underlying issues,” Mary Brosnahan, executive director Coalition for the Homeless, said earlier this month. ”Many of these people have either come directly from the street or will be sent right back out to the street, so our big fear is that this could be a death sentence for many people.”

But the homeless department’s commissioner, Seth Diamond, said Monday that the policy is fair.

“The policy that we announced is a very strong policy that will preserve shelter for those who need it and make sure that people who have alternatives to shelter use those options before they enter the city shelter system,” said Diamond

The Department of Homeless Services has delayed implementing the policy until a judge reviews a separate legal challenge by the Legal Aid Society.

(TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

  • M.A.D

    Seth Diamond is out of touch with reality and that is because he has a nice warm bed to sleep in. People do not ask to be homeless nor do they want to stay is so-called shelters. Perhaps the answer he should be seeking is what is causing this homeless epidemic and then try to resolve it.

    • Ronnie

      I agree with every thing you’re saying and add one more. If he thinks this is a luxury and not a necessity, stay in a shelter for a few days and nights, without the press etc. accompaning him and see, what he’s missing.

  • chris

    well newyork get prepared for war you have a lot of homeless vets coming home lets see how good your poice department is against 10000 vets

    • jeff

      i agree chris iam a veteren and our mayor bloomberg dont give a damn about us vets i agree give me your email i would love to meet you i just came from iraq and iam homeless..i have 50 other friends just like me its time to make a example…

  • k

    The FBI and DEA fabricate evidence, steal from suspects and use murder to close bad cases.

    After tens years and two wars the U.S. Military has become proficient in its use of torture. New techniques have been developed that are also being used by the Department of Justice (D.O.J.) employees to help fabricate evidence and punish dissent.

    The Department of Justice use torture to make suspects look unstable and help fabricate evidence . Humiliation, drugging, sleep deprivation, stress positions, threats of physical violence, harassing relatives, etc… are commonly used. Staging accidents, suicides and murders is easier when the suspect looks unstable.

    They have been harassing me for 20 years.

    • Michael H.

      None of which has anything to do with the article you are commenting on. Good job.

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