Blogs Reports

Invisibility Cloak


Reported by TJ

Published on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Bureaucracy Physical Health Poverty Stigma
Blogs Reports

Invisibility Cloak


Written by TJ

Published on Thursday, April 4th, 2024

Bureaucracy

Physical Health

Poverty

Stigma

I’m writing this report as there has been a really sad incident within the homeless community in my local area.

A small team of volunteers feed people experiencing homelessness  one night of the week. One of the team members was walking through a busy, city centre street. This street has a recovery agency on it, a homeless sector charity, and multiple thriving businesses with a lot of traffic in the form of pedestrians and shoppers.

So, it’s with a heavy heart that I write that a homeless chap was found by a volunteer laid on the floor with blue lips and completely rigid. The poor chap died. There’s no news at all surrounding his situation, i.e. what led him to this shop doorway or what caused his death. All we’ve been told is that he could have been there for 90 minutes prior to the person finding him.

Being homeless clearly comes with an invisibility cloak.

To be dead in a shop doorway for 90 minutes before someone notices clearly shows the invisibility cloak that people experiencing homelessness have to contend with.

The thing that shocked me the most is the lack of local news coverage – newspapers and such like. It seems to me it’s a case of, “oh well it’s only another homeless person, it doesn’t really matter.” That’s not what I believe. I’m just saying that’s what it seems like the local authority is saying. Especially when the local authority has got two separate multi million-pound projects going to revamp the whole town centre, from the marketplace to the high street.

Yes, you heard right, there’s people dying in town centre shop doorways whilst the local authority is splashing millions on renovation projects.

Further to this, another shocking and quite frankly disappointing incident occurred.

The team I mentioned earlier receive donations from multiple branches of a popular high street bakery in the town, as their sandwiches often need eating the day they’re prepared. So, the volunteers pick up the food on the way to feed people experiencing homelessness. However last week the manager at the bakery said he would rather throw them all away due to the volunteer being literally two minutes late. One of the team later received a snotty email from the manager of the branch saying he believes “the homeless don’t deserve the leftovers due to homeless people stealing from the bakery during the day and mouthing off at him when he confronts them.” So, hang on a second… you want to punish and penalise a whole group of people due to the actions of a very small minority of this group?

People are getting worse and worse with their attitudes towards people experiencing homelessness.

I’d honestly love to see some of these managers and politicians and “high class society” lose literally everything they have just so they can see how the other half live. Or should I say, how the other half barely exist.

Another local authority shambles in my area has been noticed locally. There was a small camp of people with tents set up in an undergrowth on the outskirts of town. The area was a big enough square area for the council to clear it and build a high-rise block of flats which would open up a lot more housing availability as a way of tackling the local homelessness situation but, low and behold, what did they do instead? Build a carpark.

I’m almost laughing as I write this last part because if I don’t, I’ll probably cry.

It’s disgusting where funding gets placed within local authorities when there’s people dying in doorways.

Written by TJ


I came from a very broken home where drug dealing was rife. Since the small age of 12 I've been a street kid, sleeping in the back of cars that were open, bank doorways for the heater at night and so on. I've come from my own version of hell like the rest of us. The past 5 years or so I've managed to level myself out and escape gang culture and addiction. I now volunteer at drug treatment program helping people in recovery through sports and fitness. It's good to be part of a team that all want to make a difference. I just want to reiterate that anything I write is just my informed opinions which usually get me hated so please don’t take anything I say as gospel. I am always open to suggestion and change and also open to other people’s opinions and input.

Read all of TJ's articles

Tags


Bureaucracy Physical Health Poverty Stigma

One thought on “Invisibility Cloak

  1. Thank you TJ for your very touching article, and The Cloak of Invisibility, “adorning” the homelessness universe.

    The callousness of the local bakery manager may be due to his Ignorance, lack of education in Humanity or perhaps he has a Doctorate in Idiot.

    Would the local populace, whether using the bakery or not, be so socially awakened (WOKE) and bold as to arrange a petition of local good citizens / good Earthlings (and without being vindictive towards the business or its manager) to boycott the store a while, to make a point to the Moron Manager, who is probably part of a franchise operation, who by his actions, is bringing the said franchise into disrepute.

    As for your heartbreaking point about the homeless gentleman, found already departed, I am speechless, and have no words to express my shock and sadness, and for which I also do empathise with you.

    My warmest regards to you, TJ.

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