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  • Writer's pictureJoe Motil

Ginther is Incapable and Unconcerned with Addressing the Needs of our Unsheltered

Originally released Feb. 17, 2023

COLUMBUS, OH – City of Columbus Mayoral candidate Joe Motil states, “The OSU student newspaper The Lantern reported today that the warming center for the unsheltered, located in the Summit United Methodist Church is closing Monday at 6 p.m. because of increased safety concerns. “According to 10TV, the Division of Police reported that two people were stabbed February 10th at the warming center.” But this is only publicized a week later." Motil adds, “The other 24-hour warming center located at 501 East Broad Street closed its doors about two weeks ago.”

Motil, citing a Columbus Dispatch article from December 22, 2022, said, “In order to address our communities’ unsheltered who suffer from living in freezing temperatures, Columbus City Council and the city's development department has partnered with homeless services organization Community Shelter Board, faith-based nonprofit United Methodist Church & Community Development for All People and the Columbus Coalition for the Homeless to create a winter warming plan, opening several warming centers across the city. All warming sites will stay open until March 15, according to the Community Shelter Board, and their services are in addition to homeless shelters operating in the city.”

“On December 19, 2022 Council member Shayla Favor said at a news conference that she had heard stories from last winter of residents staying outside at dangerous temperatures. “This is simply unacceptable. Every Columbus resident deserves dignity and access to a warm space. We knew we had to do better this year. This plan is not a permanent solution to our housing crisis or homelessness. However, the future of our city depends on ensuring all residents have means and opportunity to find safe and stable housing without financial constraints or barriers."

Motil reminds us, “On December 5, 2022 Columbus City Council allocated $595,000 to the Community Shelter Board to support two 24-hour community warming centers with about $130,000 of those funds going towards providing meals for individuals at the warming centers. Two months later, the two 24-hour warming centers are closed but were to remain open until March 15th.”

Motil concludes, “Ginther has no idea what to do regarding the needs of our unsheltered. He continues to write checks, pushes them across his desk, and pays no attention to the consequences. As for most things, he knows little about the city and its people. Empty slogans and giveaways are the Ginther Way. His reactionary solutions to this city’s enormous social and economic needs only worsen our problems and fail the city at large as well as specific populations in need. Spending hundreds of thousands of dollars, even millions, bulldozing homeless encampments while police officers watch from their cruisers proves his policies are inhumane, anti-social, and make him unfit to lead. Ill-prepared plans and knee-jerk solutions to create temporary warming centers that are now closed, with winter and freezing temperatures returning is yet another example of his incompetence. Ginther is incapable of providing any vision, leadership, or substantive plans for addressing the crises of the unsheltered, affordable housing, police reform, crime reduction, and crumbling infrastructure. If he can’t receive a campaign contribution from some private interest, he has no interest.”

His time in office must end in 2023.

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