Think before you donate

Think before you donate

We are all familiar with the alarming rates of property crime associated with the opioid crisis in our community and the seemingly steady migration of unfamiliar folks into our community for this purpose.

I run a business in the downtown area and have had to step over bodies to gain access to my front door and keep my sandals on in the long gone luxury of barefoot in the grass.

Our community has a tremendous amount of compassion for those less fortunate than ourselves.

I am trauma-informed and understand self-medicating which is the nature of addictions.

My heart breaks for the people who use our outdoor garden hose as a shower, our stairwell as a bathroom, our vacant parking lot for exploitative survival sex trade that does not engender true affirmative consent.

I have offered water, food and safety suggestions while simultaneously using a secure door code and keeping my purse locked in my trunk.

I have watched meth deals go down off the hood of my car while a young man in a hoody brandishes a hammer for the quick smash-and-grab opportunities.

I hear the full volume fights across the street and the out loud mutterings of drug-induced self-loathing. All of this is heart wrenching.

I pray for those surviving street entrenched lifestyles and wrestle with insurmountable frustration at the drug lords exploiting human suffering.

And here’s who else I am frustrated with, YOU – the people who hand out cash to the troubled souls at the traffic corners and bank machine drive-through.

STOP doing this! You are enabling this entire paradigm by giving cash to someone whom I watch run around the corner to buy their $5 hit and use on the wheel chair access ramp.

Give food! Give kindness! Offer compassion by greeting someone eye-to-eye. Feed a person’s dignity.

STOP feeding their suffering with cash and STOP contributing to the rise in drug-related property crime!

Kendra Thomas


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