The Unseen

Foreign Policy

To  follow up to my previous post, my husband discovered (after only one inquiry to the firecracker lighter himself) that the owner of the bar across the street was shooting off fireworks in order to shoo away our newest resident  homeless person. The homeless man recently settled in a small garbage heap that was the result of the wind blowing garbage around town, it all landing in a cement roofless enclosure that abuts a building. After a month, the garbage heap began to enlarge and scatter across the parking lot next door. Often the homeless man, although deeply embedded in the garbage heap he helped create, is invisible unless he tries talking to any passer-bys. He is sick, you can see that, and unable to communicate except in garbled pleas, in a language I don’t understand.

My husband and I have spoken to the building security guards, the police, a gentleman who works at the prison, to see how we could help this man, to see what is available to him, to see how Curacao handles the homeless situation (which seems, especially for the population, astoundingly large). We found out that homeless people have services available, but they have to opt for them…in other words, if they want to seek shelter, they have to walk into the shelter. That’s sensible, in a way, but for this man who can barely walk, never mind find someone who will drive him to the shelter and have the capacity to ask for help, is futile. Instead, he is being firecrackered out of his bed every night and will probably stay until he gets tired of all the noise. This we have in common.

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