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A panel representing local shelters, community resources, the Trails Regional Library, and a local church held an open public town hall this evening at the Trails Regional Library Warrensburg Branch to discuss, explain, and enlighten the community about what they do and what they can’t do for homeless/unhoused individuals in Warrensburg.

A representative from the Trail Regional Library – Warrensburg Branch:

Kansas City media market news coverage:

The rest of the panel:

The town hall (1 hour, 37 minutes):

It’s a special kind of irony when someone’s business plan is predicated on higher rents and profits, making housing less affordable, and thus helping create the unhoused/homeless issue that they’re complaining about…because business.

There were questions and statements from individuals attending the meeting:

….And I really want to emphasize that then folks who are unhoused have a huge, huge just wide variety of reasons for being unhoused. Some of them are working, some of them are looking for work, domestic violence victims, there’s a lot of reasons that people become unhoused. Some of them are mentally ill. We don’t have any cure for persistent mental illness, except to take care of them the best that we can.

And trying to lump all of these situations, because we’re talking people that have jobs, they are, they’re living in their car, they’ve got kids that are going to school, they’re trying to do all the right things and they can’t afford housing.

So we can’t allow ourselves to lump them in to this cattle car situation and say all of the homeless can’t come here, we’re gonna ship ’em south of town, we’re gonna ship ’em to some other place. That is a huge, huge danger sign. That is cattle cars. And you should be, we should never go there.

People who are unhoused are human beings and they are citizens of this place. It may not be the most recent place, but they are citizens here. And yes, they pay taxes every time they buy something, every time they have to put gas in their car, every time they have to fix a busted car, yes, they’re paying taxes.

I’m over, over the demonization of people because they fell into the hole that we have been lucky enough not to fall in yet. I’m really over it.

I have worked with the severely mentally challenged. I have had people on moving…try to shove heads through windows. They don’t ask to be that mentally ill. And it’s a minority, but because we don’t have mentally, mental health services at the scale that we need these people get lost.

Warrensburg is a great little town. It cannot become that gated community where we cattle car people out because they don’t look nice.

Nobody’s got a scarlet H on their forehead that tells you that they’re homeless. I’m over it.

These folks [on the panel] are doing an incredible job and there’s more. And they have half the Warrensburg cat ladies here tonight [laughter] and I admire the work that they do, but they know that, that homeless people, sometimes the only thing they have that loves them back is their animal, and yes, they will stay out in the woods to protect that animal. I don’t care if it’s a cat, or a dog, or [inaudible] possum.

I’m over it. We can do better than this. And we do not have to get ugly about it.

These folks deserve our compassion and our attention and help because most people that are homeless aren’t homeless permanently. It’s very short term….


Trails Regional Library – Board of Trustees – Holden, Missouri – June 21, 2023 (June 22, 2023)