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Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Will

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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby Nighteyes » Sep 11, 2017 5:21 am

Echoing STLICTX, astra, in.exile and Spinygrrl.

Remember that rant I said I wouldn't do? I kind of changed my mind... Here it is:
(I am so going to regret this, later on)

[Nighteyes takes a deep breath]

First of all a disclaimer, I next to nothing about Miami except from that the place exsist. I don't have any other angles on this case other than the Time article in.exile posted. I have, knock on wood, never been homeless and truly hope I will never be in that situation, because I don't think I would be able to handle it well. But I do know/have known people.
All and all this do mean I do very much have a privileged outsider's view of this whole situation. And let's not forget that I am not even from the US to begin with.

In other words, feel free to disregard all that follows.

A person who refuses to join random strangers to somewhere unknown "for their own safety" is not "crazy". They might have all kinds of valid reasons not to go:

a) they don't want to
b) they don't want to lose their belongings, and they are asked not to bring them
c) they don't trust the people who are asking them to come
d) they feel threatened by the people who are asking them to come
e) they have gotten no beforhand notice and are taken by surprise about the whole thing
f) they actually do have access to shelter, in a way that the authorities don't know about
g) any other reason you might think of
h) any combination of the above
h) et cetera

Remember, option a) is still valid, important and should be respected.

Many communities where weather is a thing have these stories about people who, during the worst strom that people could recount, chose to stay where they felt they belonged instead of seeking shelter and protecion. And they would die of exposure. All involved parties knew of that risk, yet respected this person's choice in the matter. - Because they were often respected people in the community. When the storm was over one would find their bodies, bury them and mourn. End of story.

Homeless people are seldom respected by society at large.
At least that's the case around here, and some other places I've visited over the years.

Every winter we have a couple of nights/weeks where it gets really cold. The city in collaberation with some charities and churches have (inadequate) emergency shelter options for people in need, that announce through word of mounth, newsoutlets, public announcements and social workers. However, the police don't patrol the steet during the evening detaining people who don't go there. They don't. Sometimes people freeze to death. It happens. It's horrible. It happens.

Bottom line is that we are talking about involuntary detainment of people belonging to a vulnerable group, for their "own protection". That's fucked up and horrible.

Then there's the whole "showing (previous) signs of mental illness"-thing that really rubs me the wrong way. Being homeless is in many/most/all cases not an easy life. Regardless of how people found themselves in that situation to begin with. At least not here. Showing (previous) signs of mental illness => at one point or another being in distress => being human.

On a normal day most people/society couldn't care less about homeless people. In quite a few cases, putting it mildly, that's one of the main reasons they are homeless in the first place. The world is fucked up. Even our modern cities are often designed to make life harder on them.

The world is fucked up.

All people ought to have access to shelter and safety. Shelter and safety ought to be accessible to everyone.
That's a human right (or the sum of several human rights, technically speaking).

This article tells the tale about some people putting value on "shelter" over the actual safety of people at risk. People who have the means of enforcing that view.

It isn't about "either you go to the strom shelter or you go to the storm shelter whether you like it or not", which also is highly problematic if that had been the case. But it's not. We are talking about "either you go to the storm shelter or you risk torture and never being free again". – as pointed out by several people earlier.

The world is fucked up.

</rant>

solefood wrote:i asked you all a question. what would you do instead??
(...)
what would YOU do? (...)


Find a way that didn't involve:
Nighteyes wrote: involuntary detainment of people belonging to a vulnerable group, for their "own protection".
[(...) also known as] "either you go to the storm shelter or you risk torture and never being free again".


It's a simple as that.
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby solefood » Sep 11, 2017 7:38 am

Nighteyes wrote:
The world is fucked up.




yup, sure is
the world is not my home I'm just passing through
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby solefood » Sep 11, 2017 7:47 am

Nighteyes wrote:
solefood wrote:i asked you all a question. what would you do instead??
(...)
what would YOU do? (...)


Find a way that didn't involve:
Nighteyes wrote: involuntary detainment of people belonging to a vulnerable group, for their "own protection".
[(...) also known as] "either you go to the storm shelter or you risk torture and never being free again".


It's a simple as that.


ok... but what then?

lets say you have 1 week before a hurricane hits your city,

come up with something better. if its so simple.

nobody has really had a better idea yet, other than, frankly "letting people die"
so...

i mean if thats everyones idea of liberty just say so. just say the words:

"id rather just let them all die"

thats all you have to say, i'll understand. i just want you to say it yourselves. i want you to own that
the world is not my home I'm just passing through
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby in.exile » Sep 11, 2017 10:01 am

stepping in as a moderator to say:

solefood, nobody owes you a reply here. your posts demanding a reply are bordering on harassment.


to everyone commenting: please consider taking a break from this thread if you're not able to engage without insulting other forum members.
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby in.exile » Sep 11, 2017 10:20 am

Nighteyes wrote:First of all a disclaimer, I next to nothing about Miami except from that the place exsist. I don't have any other angles on this case other than the Time article in.exile posted.


i know a little bit about florida and the mental health system there based on conversations with friends who do peer support work there. the baker act (the law that allows for involuntary psych detention) is apparently abused quite often. one person i talked to about this was angry but totally unsurprised that it was happening.

i value autonomy, freedom, and informed consent. people i care about make a lot of shitty choices that put their lives at risk all the damn time (too many drugs, too much alcohol, reckless gun use, etc), and as much as it sometimes hurts to watch, their lives are their own to live as they choose. i will call them out if/when their actions cause harm to another, but i will not take part in forcibly depriving them of their autonomy.
a person without housing deserves that same level of choice and autonomy. desiring freedom and desiring the ability to make choices (even if someone else considers the choices to be bad ones), is not proof of mental instability.
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby Spinygrrl » Sep 13, 2017 1:54 pm

To me, one thing this whole thing points towards is a need to create services and service places that people can actually trust and feel safe going to.

Social workers regularly get it wrong. Psychs, therapists, LICSWS, case workers, etc get triggered, don't examine themselves, and make decisions radically curtailing people's freedom and fucking up their lives all the time. A sad reality, in my experience, is that a lot of shit masquerading as "services" isn't. People go to crisis services looking emotional and being loud; some worker calls it "being out of control" and 35-As them. Someone goes to the hospital suicidal; they end up getting forcibly locked and shipped far out of their community. Someone calls the police for help and ends up shot. Someone goes to the shelter, or food pantry, and ends up degraded and demeaned. Just last week I called my health insurance case manager, which I'm mandated to have whether I want one or not, and she spoke to me in baby voice once she realized I was the client. Happens. All the fucking time.

A lifetime of seeing and experiencing that shit has made me really wary of seeking services, and I consider myself one of the relatively privileged ones. I don't know what 10 or 20 years more on the street would have done to me. It's been my observation that people take help when it's offered, but just because something calls itself help doesn't mean it actually is. You can't wait until there's a hurricane to build trust in a community. That is something that should have been being built starting many years ago. Inability to trust the untrustworthy, leading to death, is one of the consequences of a mental health system in which no one respects the humanity of the so-called mentally ill.

People are gonna die as a consequence of Irma, including people who I think of as some of ours. It fucking sucks. In the world of "what can we do", I think for my self, I am going to continue to put energy into those trauma conscious spaces where no one is seen as a client nor a provider. Others may have the energy to try to beat the system into something more respecting of human rights and dignity, more power to them.

People aren't dumb. In an emergency, most people are willing to go to a space that feels safe.

It really says something to me that the shelter system, apparently, did not feel safe for some so-called mentally ill people in Miami.
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Re: Hurricane Irma: Miami Homeless Detained Against Their Wi

Postby solefood » Sep 13, 2017 5:08 pm

gotta say i agree with you 100%.
the world is not my home I'm just passing through
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