Poor Solutions

Taylor Perse’s “poor farm” story was an insightful and interesting look into the past (“The Poor Among Us,” 1/9). While the “poor farm” concept is extremely outdated, the willingness of local people to come together to solve the problems of today is stronger than ever.

As Terry McDonald states, “Homelessness isn’t static.”

Yet it feels like Eugene City Council, some of the more conservative members of the Lane County Board of County Commissioners (BCC) and the executive director (Jacob Fox) of Homes for Good (HFG) are paralyzed by a static and outdated “business-as-usual” approach to the issues of homelessness and environmental protections necessary to curb climate change.

Greenway Guardians and the people of Eugene and Lane County are working to change the future of homelessness while protecting the Willamette Greenway.

The open-space located on River Road and the Willamette Greenway was purchased with public funding to build affordable housing. HFG and their BCC directing board have since decided to sell it to an out-of-state developer who plans to cut down all of the trees on the lot, pave the greenspace with concrete and build 93 market-rate (expensive) units.

Meanwhile, neighbors hold a higher vision in which the Greenway is protected and an appropriate development of affordable housing (similar to Emerald Village) can be implemented to help those who are unhoused.

You cannot solve the dynamic problems of today by using unsuccessful and unimaginative techniques of the past. Why does the community understand this, but our leadership has yet to evolve?

Jacqueline L. McClure