Gordon Graham here with Today’s Tip from Lexipol.
Today we’re going to talk about homelessness. This is a nationwide problem present in many of our communities. If you haven’t encountered a homeless person or homeless encampment during your career, chances are you will eventually.
One thing we need to remember is that homelessness is not a crime. All people need to be treated with dignity and respect. This includes those who are unhoused. When you encounter someone who is homeless, one of the ways you can help is by knowing what resources are available in your community.
Community meal programs offer hot meals at no cost either daily or a few times per week. Keep information on hand about these programs, such as the days and times of the meals.
It’s also important to be familiar with local community organizations that provide assistance to homeless persons. Locate the shelters in your area and the surrounding areas. Learn each shelter’s criteria for placement. Also find out when “service centers” are offered in your area. These are one-stop locations that provide homeless people with easy access to necessary medical attention and employment counseling. They can also provide housing searches and additional support.
Do your own research and compile helpful information that can be referenced later. From there, you can learn and share valuable information with the homeless people in your community. Remember, they may have to walk to certain locations to get information. And they often don’t have the luxury of a cell phone or internet access to get information. Don’t send them on a wild goose chase. Get to know the resources available in your community so that you can provide accurate and helpful information to those in need.
And that’s Today’s Tip from Lexipol. Until next time, Gordon Graham signing off.