Salt Lake Marching and Chowder Club

Minutes from the Salt Lake City Marching and Chowder Club                                     12-15-2015

Minutes prepared by Lauren Smith


John Shannon, President SLCMCC, 

Charlotte Mates, Vice President SLCMCC, 

Lauren Smith, Secretary SLCMCC, 

Barbara Taylor, Treasurer SLCMCC, 

Bernie Hart, member SLCMCC, 

Marita Hart, member SLCMCC,

Carl Spitzmacher, local resident, 

Gina Cross, member SLCMCC, 

Peter Smith, Lauren’s brother, 

Susan Terry, John’s wife

Camille Winnie, Downtown Alliance Director of Community Service,

Change the “raise the bar” from last week’s meeting to “raise the standard”

Last week’s minutes read and accepted

Treasury report: $14.00

Introduced one another around table. New members:

Susan: John’s wife, here to support John and for a free lunch

Peter: Lauren’s brother, here to check it out

Camille Winnie: From “Downtown Alliance”, non-profit organization who put on the farmers market in Pioneer Park. They have a Safety and maintenance meeting monthly on first Tuesday.

John: we are not a service organization, we get people to behave better by acting like an effective community. We have 2 focuses:

The notion that we can encourage local residents to begin to act better by lifting single individuals’ self-esteem.

If/how the locals in the Pioneer Park area and Road Home residents can take on the aspects of a functional community as individuals to begin to take responsibility for their actions.

Bradley Weischedel is helping by doing a literature about how the “bottom up” approach in working in other cities. He was not able to attend this week.

What will happen to the men if the scatter proposal comes into effect?

Camille says that there is no official word and that additional sites have not been chosen. She stresses that any speculation is premature and will not be helpful.

There are at least 2 facilities recommended under the Mayor’s new plans. The Midvale Family Shelter only operates 6 months of the year.

The Road Home will not operate “as is”. Mayor McAdams and Jackie Biskupski’s team will work together after Jackie is sworn into office. The first priority is a family shelter.

The “Housing First” program is statewide and borders are not (at least, should not be) drawn by county/city boundaries.

Carl talked about “eminent domain” where there is sale of private property for a public purpose. How does this affect the homeless?

Bernie wonders what will become of Rob Barrus funded land. Local residents aren’t stupid, they communicate. The better the services are, the more people will show up. When word about how good Utah’s transients have it was on the Cobert show, there was an influx of transients.

John says that decisions are being made from people who don’t know who they are servicing. He wants to know if there is a structure. He wants to find out about accountability.

Camille says that there is a collaborative structure called Collective Impact being led by the County and that people are working hard to coordinate efforts locally that were formerly in siloed groups.

Carl wants to go with us on a tour at the Road Home at night on the men’s side. He used to stay there but would only go from 10pm – 5:30am because of the conditions. He says it will be a real eye opener as to how bad things really are. Action item.

Bernie went to the Weigand center to talk to women about daycare service and was offered drugs at least 5 times. He was nervous because the problems are right there and in your face. Mental health service providers know which ones have the problems but they are powerless to help,

Char thinks that the new social workers will have the ability to bring local residents together and that is where we should get hope.

Bernie had meeting with a professor from Utah State who is in the mental health field. There are no answers about how to deal with PTSD even though there have been extensive studies on meditation, cognitive behavioral therapy, etc. like the study in Fort Bliss, Texas. If we had a solution to the problem, we would be using it.

John has been getting through to local residents for 4-5 months, but different people have different ideas. Some say the services are lousy and some say it’s OK. He wonders if we can make things better. As an outsider, he wants to understand the structure. He wants to know if they really do take care of each other.

Camille says that most of the fights and stabbings are drug deals gone wrong.

Char asked Peter about carpentry and he suggested that we should figure out a way for local residents to make a profit, perhaps at the Farmer’s Market on things like bird houses.

Carl said that there are organizations like Labor finders and APEK who pay 50 cents on the dollar to hire people

Gina stresses that it’s the little things that make a difference. Things such as providing Lysol to the mothers for the bedbug problem. It does help and it makes them feel much better about bringing their kids to a shelter.

Camille mentioned a book called “Bridges out of Poverty” that can help people understand class rules for people in poverty. She says that educational processes like one-on-one mentoring are most successful and that people have to be ready to change their lives. There is a Salt Lake program called “The Other Side Academy” which is a residential program for people who have been homeless or incarcerated. They learn life skills and job skills while in the program. There are also classes taught at the Weigand Center that she organizes in the classroom to help the homeless.  There is no one-size-fits-all approach. It has to be done one on one.

There are good programs such as Transitional Housing where you have to earn your way in.

The Weigand center employs many local residents.

Mentally ill people cannot be expected to take responsibility.

We need to keep opening communication lines between the people who have the money and get them talking to each other.

Camille says that there is one-on-one help for things like finding rides and locating paperwork for those who want the help from the HOST program and street outreach teams.

Gina asked if local residents have enough resources to help find housing. She says that people need guidance.

Meeting adjourned.

Action Item:

Lauren to set up tour at Road Home