I have been helping people under the Queen City Bridge for about three years. It has gotten rougher there, and even the people staying there do not like what has happened.
One problem is that with another camp closed by the railroad tracks, there are now 25 to 30 people living under the bridge. They cannot go to another bridge as they are all managed by the Department of Transportation, which will not allow it. They get chased off from railroad track locations but show up back there shortly afterward. There is another camp that has restructured. They need a place to live with restrooms.
These are not animals; they are people with problems. Some veterans we have met do not want to live in a place at all. I would give food and clothing and tents to people who needed them through the years. Olive Garden employees just gathered up clothes for individuals whose four tents were burned down by a flare gun.
I have to agree it has gotten rough down there. They feel they are family down there and stick up for one another. I went once after this and noticed it was not good. I started meeting them one by one at the gas station above the bridge when they needed something. I stopped going as the Lord spoke to me and asked me not to go under there anymore.
I do not give money unless it’s an emergency, as I will not support their habits, and I tell them that. They get free food, medical and dental services at Good News at Noon. They get free food at The Way. I am thankful they never have to go hungry. If they work at the thrift store by J&J’s, I am told they will give them clothes they need. I am thankful some are helping.