Starving A Problem - Solution - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

May 23, 2011

Starving A Problem = Solution?

The State of Hawaii has put forward a bold, nine-step plan to show absolute improvement in lessening the homeless problem through Hawaii, especially on Oahu. The plan is aimed to do far more than simply shuffle people around. The problems that existed when other efforts took place still exist, including  mental health problems and obstinacy to moving into a shelter that requires adherence to rules.

But one aspect of this 90-day mission is a bit troubling. The state is asking churches and other entities to stop feeding the homeless, suggesting that it's not helping the problem and is, in fact, adding more people to the ranks of the homeless. I don't believe that more people are becoming homeless so that they can grab a meal here and there. And frankly, does starving people really solve some of the deep-seeded problems related to pride to live on one's own and/or mental problems?

If the state wants to reach the homeless, which it does, then perhaps it can partner up with the caregivers and philanthropic feeders in a non-threatening environment- like while they are eating- to try and convince at least some of these needy or troubled people that there are better alternatives than staying on the streets, parks, and beaches. Feeding the homeless provides needed nourishment and undoubtedly prevents some from stealing. The state's efforts are to be applauded, but let's use the feeding facilities as a positive means to an end without getting punitive and cutting people off. Think about it…

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