On Saturday, July 19th 2014, three teenaged boys allegedly attacked three homeless men, killing two and severely injuring the third. It’s a widely acknowledged fact that individuals experiencing homelessness are often the target of physical threats and violence. While this tragic event highlights the increased vulnerabilities of people living on Albuquerque’s streets, we as a community have the power to find lasting solutions to prevent and end homelessness. It begins with open and honest dialogue; it’s time for us as a community to talk about homelessness and how we help people find their way home.
“People who live on the streets are just like us but they have been impacted by the loss of a job, mental illness or drug use, unforeseen life tragedies, domestic violence, health issues and life challenges. We must join together to send a clear message that everyone has value within our community – that everyone has value and deserves respect.”
-Rev. Fr. Rusty Smith, Executive Director of St. Martin’s Hospitality Center
It is time for us to stand up, speak out and get involved in making our community a safe place for everyone. St. Martin’s, in partnership with Mayor Berry, APD/COAST/CIT, the City of Albuquerque Department of Community and Family Services, Heading Home, Albuquerque Health Care for the Homeless, Supportive Housing Coalition of New Mexico and Albuquerque Opportunity Center want to start the conversation about solutions and get staff on the streets to help make it safe for all. Together we will be hosting specialized, intensive street outreach throughout the city to provide: screening and intake, emergency rapid rehousing, food and nursing support, housing assessment and placement, Medicaid application assistance and medical services. Please join us in a citywide discussion through social media at #SpeakOutABQ. Share your insights and make your voice heard. Let’s talk about homelessness and how we help people on the streets find their way to Hope and Home.