Kudos to Todd DeMar and Watertown City Councilman Clifford G. Olney for assisting Linda Mercer, the Factory Street building owner, in getting her building to pass the violated codes and making it available for rental to the homeless.
Now we all know that the city was responsible for adding 30 individuals to the homeless roles. Perhaps condemning a building was to teach the landlord a lesson and force her to take action, but who did it really hurt?
Thirty innocent people who had no power in the issue, were pushed out into the street into a tent city. And then seeking more shelter, they moved to the Butler Pavilion and eventually, thanks to state Rep. Scott Gray, a warm building.
One man died in his vehicle, and did homelessness shorten his life? Studies have shown that homelessness does not contribute to a healthy life.
When you are homeless, how do you eat, sleep, keep clean, go to the bathroom, keep warm, keep cool, take your medication, keep your appointments etc.? Thank you to Todd DeMar and City Councilman Cliff Olney for fixing a problem that lasted far too long and should never happened and to Craig Fox for a great job reporting on it.
The writer, a registered nurse, is director of the NNY Autism Foundation.
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