by Conscious Reminder
Almost fifteen years ago, the church St. Boniface, located in the city of San Francisco, started opening the doors for people that were homeless and needed shelters.
This effort has been an initiative of Father Louis Vitale from the church, started together with Shelly Roder, who is a community activist, somewhere during 2004. The project was called The Gubbio Project.
Each day, a great number of people pass through this church, utilizing the pews in order to sleep on and even getting blankets given by the staff.
According to the website of the Gubbio Project, they don’t ask their guests questions when they walk into their churches. Trying to remove all the barriers to the entry, there aren’t intake forms or sign-in papers. They never turn people away; everyone is welcomed, treated with respect and dignity.
This facility is even nowadays open for the local churchgoers that would like to visit during the day; however, about 2/3 or more of the space is reserved only for the before mentioned Gubbio Project.
One representative of the Gubbio Project said:
“This sends a powerful message to our unhoused neighbors – they are, in essence, part of the community, not to be kicked out when those with homes come in to worship.”
He even mentioned that it sends messages to those that attend mass – in fact, the community is including the poor, tired, and those suffering from mental health problems or who are cold, dirty and wet.
Among the major complaints that individuals usually have about the shelters for homeless people is that sometimes, those shelters feel extremely dangerous, and like prisons; however, the project appears different.
About 95% of the ones that were surveyed said that they always feel safe with the help of the project, and those that are passing through aren’t treated like some prisoners because they actually are in various shelters.
In 2018, one medium reported that Seattle had some plans to set up razor-wire fencing in order to keep the homeless people from camping.
Shortly after that, it was reported that the city of San Francisco has been using Robots to scare the homeless individuals away from the encampments or even report them to police.
Moreover, in this city, the government spent about $8,700 in order to install large boulders right under overpasses in order to prevent the homeless population from setting up camps.
In that area, there have been countless homeless encampments, unless they forced them out of there in recent time, and right now, the government of the city does everything in order to keep these camps away of this area.
In March, a lot of activists who tried to feed the homeless people in Wells Park, California were also arrested. Police arrested even a kid aged 14.
According to the authorities, the law has the purpose of preventing the spreading of diseases for sure; however, according to activists, the government criminalizes the homeless.
One activist, named Mark Lane said that this means criminalizing the homelessness. According to him, the authorities created four laws against people who are homeless.
No sleeping in the cars, no camping, no panhandling, or no feeding these people.
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