Wednesday, October 8


Washington Post - The controversial Franklin Shelter issue exploded into an expletive-filled argument over breakfast this morning before D.C. Council members went into a legislative meeting where Council member Marion Barry plans to introduce emergency legislation that would require beds for the homeless in the downtown business area. Downtown is in Ward 2. That's Jack Evans's territory. He said he did not understand why some of his colleagues are interested in reopening a "piece of. . . shelter." (Fill in the blanks.). . .

In an interview, Barry defended his legislation, "Homelessness is a national issue, it is a city-wide issue," he said. "For anyone saying this is a personal issue is out of their damn mind." He said that he introduced the legislation and placed in it boundaries because the homeless people need to be downtown so their livelihood depends on begging. (He is, however, pulling the legislation as council members try to work out disagreements among each other and with the administration.) "Homeless people during the day they panhandle. If they are moved to the Martin Luther King shelter, there is no people out there to panhandle," Barry said. "Most of us support housing first, low-barrier shelter; the reality (is) we have not seen the mayor's plan. The mayor thumbs his nose at the council. This is a human issue." During the breakfast, Council Chairman Vincent C. Gray (D) and others also expressed concern that Mayor Adrian M. Fenty (D) did not provide members with details of his plan, particularly the addresses to which 300 homeless have been moved. . . Evans also jumped on other council members for "making speeches at the shelter," which is at 13th and K streets NW.


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