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Homeless are people, not pieces of trash

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Posted: Friday, July 13, 2007 10:00 pm

I believe there are more problems with Mr. Heath's column than I can delve into at this time.

I am, however, very disturbed by the casual use of the word "worthless" paired up with the homeless. I understand these people have issues, including addictions and mental health issues; some are lazy and some are down on their luck. But they are, first and foremost, people.

We need solutions and there are those of us trying to help them see a way out; and we're called Homeless Outreach Workers.

Some of those "worthless" people you mention, Mr. Heath, may have their vices, but some are quite industrious, intelligent, friendly and helpful to others. Of course, for every person like this, there are those who are conniving, cheating, lazy and apathetic.

The problem is that some of them have lost hope. Where do they turn to next? We need solutions.

These vindictive and stereotyping columns are not it.

Some people like to point out what they like to think the problem is, but fail to offer a solution. I welcome open and honest discussions of the problems and their possible solutions. The more people who become part of the solution, the better the chance at addressing the issues.

Dennis M. Buettner

PSSWII Behavioral Health Services

San Joaquin County

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