Why?

Just a thought that was running through my head last night while I was walking back to my apartment- aside from fearing for my life- and not knowing whether the guy walking behind me was some random drunk, or something worse.
Why is it that the homeless in Philadelphia feel the need to follow you around and into the middle of the street where they will yell racial slurs and make try to belittle you as you walk by?
Back home, in New York, our homeless just sat there, asking people who walked by for change, but I found that when I came to Philadelphia, the homeless people I have encountered accost people in the middle of the streets. Not sure about how the city has been dealing with the homeless problem, but would like to find out a little- Some searching through the archives of Philly Metblogs led to a post in 2005 talking about the city announcing a 10 million dollar 10 year plan to make homes and programs for them homeless. Wonder what happened to that plan…

3 Comments so far

  1. Joe S (unregistered) on June 5th, 2007 @ 2:59 pm

    Jeff,
    Same thing was happening to me on The 16/1700 block of Walnut Street, but around 10pm on a Saturday night. Agressive, mentally ill, homeless folks, shouting, singing in your face. The people we were with are New Yorkers. They were pretty surprised at the number of homeless in the heart of the city and their antics.


  2. Martin G. (unregistered) on June 6th, 2007 @ 3:46 pm

    I had a homeless man follow me as I was leaving the Wawa on 2nd and South a few weeks ago. As usual, I ignored him and he started yelling “fuck you” and following me to my car. As I was pulling out of my parking spot, he started kicking my car!


  3. Chap (unregistered) on June 7th, 2007 @ 10:36 am

    Homelessness is clearly a hard problem. However, I would caution us from labeling every unkempt, intoxicated, threatening, or mental ill person as being “homeless”. In my experience it just serves to confuse the issue rather than help define the problems.

    Philadelphia does have a Homeless Outreach Hotline that you can call whenever you see someone on the streets that may need help. They will drive to them and get them what they need.

    The numbers are:
    (215) 232-1984 or 1-877-222-1984



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