No room or rest for the weary: Senior and disabled homeless men in Murray Hill subjected to latest street sweep

4 unhoused men braving the chilly on thirty fifth Street and 1st Avenue in Murray Hill had already begun packing their belongings by the time a contingent representing the NYPD, Sanitation Division, and Division of Social Companies arrived Wednesday morning to get them out of there.

Huddled in jackets, they informed amNewYork Metro that that they had mentally ready for the sweep; such is life on the streets amid the metropolis’s ongoing efforts to sweep away homeless encampments from the streets.

An important situation for them was to guarantee their vital objects have been safe: hats, coats, identification playing cards, and meals. In accordance to Alex, one in every of the 4 homeless men taken up shelter below Sweetgreen and utilizing cardboard bins as a mattress, things like sizzling meals or easy private belongings are a luxurious.

Mario. Picture by Dean Moses

Earl Martin, a senior who has been dwelling on the streets for six years, climbed out of his makeshift shelter to greet the arriving outreach employee. He was prepared to settle for placement, so long as that placement noticed him safe in a single room away from the risks of a congregate setting.

Nonetheless, the DHS agent responded by solely providing shared lodgings earlier than swiftly transferring on.

“When the pandemic started, they were giving everyone single rooms,” Martin stated. “I do not want to go into a dormitory situation; that is all that the housing providers are offering. If they had a single room where a qualified counselor walks, make their day-to-day assessment in a single room, not in a dormitory, where I’m exposed to three or four people I would.”

Earl Martin. Picture by Dean Moses
Kevin. Picture by Dean Moses

With out what Martin thought of a secure place from each COVID-19 and strangers, he was left to collect his belongings, ditch what he couldn’t carry, and transfer elsewhere.

Kevin, recognized regionally as OG, is one other homeless senior who’s unable to stand with out the use of a walker additionally confronted the similar situation. Kevin defined that he has been dwelling on the street after his spouse handed away and he was evicted for not being on the lease.

Having been by the shelter system, Kevin defined that he would solely settle for single rooms going ahead. Tough sleeping hasn’t been a lot simpler; the disabled homeless particular person defined that he lately was pressured to spend six nights in jail after he says he was falsely accused of a intercourse assault by one other undomiciled particular person.

Unraveling a bit of paper, Kevin showcased that the expenses have been in the end dropped, however he was pressured to reside with the penalties of a false accusation.

DSNY clear the encampment. Picture by Dean Moses
DSNY clear the encampment. Picture by Dean Moses

Nonetheless, with life as harsh as it’s, he says he would moderately battle the chilly and the insecurity of the streets than be positioned in a shared shelter room.

“I am tough,” Kevin stated of the chilly.

Regardless of the frigid temperatures, and Kevin’s age and incapacity, DHS declared that each one that they had to supply was a shared double room.

As DSNY bought to work clearing the encampment, Martin and Kevin felt have been fairly actually disregarded in the chilly.

Kevin exhibits that his expenses have been dropped. Picture by Dean Moses

The 2 youthful members of the encamp, Alex and Mario agreed to take companies and share a room. Nonetheless, whereas Martin was ready to transfer on, Kevin was left in the similar location, hunched in the chill.

amNewYork Metro reached out to DHS concerning if there are particular circumstances for the senior and disabled homeless individuals, however have but to obtain a response.

Alex strikes his belongings. Picture by Dean Moses
Picture by Dean Moses

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