Five days before Christmas, the City of Rochester, NY bulldozed all the belongings of residents in a homeless village and put their few earthly possessions in a giant dumpster. Take that Christmas. Bah-humbug.
Homeless displaced again as City destroys tent city (in photos)
Today, December 20, 2014, the City of Rochester, NY destroyed Sanctuary Village. This was the last stop for people with no place to go. Tents, sleeping bags, tarps, and, personal items were bulldozed into a dumpster. No city official present, including the RPD, would take responsibility for this atrocity, five days before Christmas.
Sanctuary Village is a homeless tent city safe haven and a visible protest of Monroe County’s and Rochester, New York’s (anti) housing & homeless policies.
Below are photographs of the destruction.
Housing is a human right.
Videos of the destruction
As I understand it, many people had all of their worldly belongings, including their identification cards, bulldozed into a pit and covered over with dirt – resulting in many people being far worse off than even before.
Indications are that the mayor’s initial response to those who criticized her actions was less than ideal.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO STOP AND REVERSE THE INJUSTICE COMMITTED AGAINST THE HOMELESS AT SANCTUARY VILLAGE
1) DONATE to House of Mercy (Rochester, New York)
2) CALL Mayor Lovely Warren at 585-428-7045 and politely demand HANDS OFF our homeless residents and HANDS ON finding a building within days for the homeless. All the homeless belongings should returned and they should have some form of reparations. Christmas is the time for giving, not taking from the those who have the least.
3) SIGN the Petition to support the dispossessed homeless of Sanctuary Village.
“‘Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.” Ezekiel 16:49
Look, none of us are blameless. None of us are without sin in our lives. None of us have not had days that we wish we could have a “do-over” for. None of us haven’t engaged in at least some degree of oppressing and judging the poor. Let’s embrace a sense of over-arching Christmas cheer and goodwill for all – trusting that all Grinches and Scrooges can catch the spirit of Christmas and transform to those who are truly lovely – and bless the lives of others.
Merry Christmas Rochester, NY – including your mayor.
xx – Roger
Rev. Roger Wolsey is an ordained United Methodist pastor who directs the Wesley Foundation at the University of Colorado at Boulder, and is author of Kissing Fish: christianity for people who don’t like christianity