Despicable Homeless Services (DHS) 2017

Novemerber 24, 2017
Where’s transparency? Media banned from homeless meeting

It was the community meeting where not everyone in the community could attend. In fact, it was a community meeting where really no one in the community could attend, unless you received an invitation, and were not a member of the media.

http://www.riverdalepress.com/stories/wheres-transparency-media-banned-from-homeless-meeting,64102

Novemerber 16, 2017
City Increasingly Paying Back Rent to Keep Tenants from Homelessness

In 2016, the city provided 58,167 households with rent arrears payments totaling more than $214 million, with an average of $3,688 per case. This was an increase from 54,737 households and $188 million in 2015; up from 48,654 cases and $149 million in 2014, the first year of de Blasio’s time as mayor, according to data provided by the administration’s Human Resources Administration (HRA).

Before de Blasio took office, the city was also using rent arrears payments through HRA. In 2013 about 47,000 households were helped with $127 million in rent arrears; in 2012, 44,500 were helped with $121 million; and in 2011, 40,300 households with $107 million, according to HRA.

http://www.gothamgazette.com/city/7326-city-increasingly-paying-back-rent-to-keep-tenants-from-homelessness

Novemerber 16, 2017
CITY PLANS TO USE SWANKY MIDTOWN HOTEL AS HOMELESS SHELTER

“We are literally warehousing homeless people in commercial hotels without services,” said Comptroller Scott Stringer. “The cost is a staggering $100 million a year.

http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/news/2017/11/17/city-plans-to-use-swanky-midtown-hotel-as-homeless-shelter

Novemerber 14, 2017
‘I Grabbed the Knife and Wouldn’t Let Go:’ Mother Describes Domestic Violence in NYC Shelter

Quinn accused the NYC Department of Homeless Services of “bureaucratic bungling” for failing to notify shelter staff when the family moved in two weeks ago that Jennings is a level 3 sex offender. Quinn says that had her staff been aware, they would have done more, perhaps offering the family more social work support or housing them closer to the security office, but she acknowledged such hypothetical steps might not have prevented this attack.

https://www.nbcnewyork.com/investigations/New-York-City-Mother-Stabbed-Boyfriend-Shelter-NYC-457370723.html

Novemerber 3, 2017
Mugged by Reality on Homelessness

When Bill de Blasio ran for mayor in 2013, castigating his predecessor Michael Bloomberg’s record on homelessness was central to his “Tale of Two Cities” argument, in which he portrayed a city of deepening wealth divides. Since taking office, de Blasio has nearly doubled spending on homeless services, which now exceeds $2 billion. The results have been unimpressive, though. The numbers of homeless in all categories—sheltered and unsheltered, families and single adults—have risen on the mayor’s watch. To the extent that New Yorkers worry about a return to the “ungovernable city” days, homelessness is Exhibit A.

https://www.city-journal.org/html/mugged-reality-homelessness-15519.html

Octoberber 24, 2017
De Blasio takes the blame for street homelessness

Mayor de Blasio admitted Tuesday that he failed to address the escalating street homelessness crisis when he entered office — but not without taking a dig at Gov. Cuomo and Mike Bloomberg.

“I wish I had done better in the beginning of the administration in terms of focusing on street homelessness as much as we were focusing on shelter homelessness,” he said. “And I wish I had done better at getting a holistic plan forward.”

https://nypost.com/2017/10/24/de-blasio-takes-the-blame-for-street-homelessness/

Octoberber 23, 2017
MTA, Cuomo blast de Blasio for reaction to sleeping homeless man

De Blasio announced last year that cops would stop arresting people for taking up two or more seats on the subway and said those cases wouldn’t be pursued in court.

Cuomo, touting his own record helping the homeless, said the issue of vagrants riding the rails was “something that we figured out 30 years ago.”

https://nypost.com/2017/10/23/mta-cuomo-blast-de-blasio-for-reaction-to-sleeping-homeless-man/

Octoberber 18, 2017
City schools failing to help homeless students, Public Advocate says

“Our City has failed to fulfill its promise to provide a quality education to every child, especially our homeless students,” James said. “Homeless students already face great odds in obtaining a quality education and instead of providing them with greater chances at success, we are denying them and their families the ability to thrive.

Just over 60,000 people are currently living in city shelters and about 40 percent of those people are children, Homeless Services data shows. Those children, according to James’ report, are chronically absent from school.

Octoberber 15, 2017
Homeless Shelters Name Their Own Rates in New York, Audit Finds

Thomas P. DiNapoli, the state comptroller, said in a statement that the city should be commended for its efforts to address shelter rates. “More can be done to negotiate with providers and to pay consistent rates that are within guidelines,” Mr. DiNapoli said in a statement. “We hope this audit assists the city with its ongoing work.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/15/nyregion/homeless-shelter-rates-contracts-new-york-city.html

Octoberber 13, 2017
Many civic associations concerned about homeless shelters in their neighborhoods

The Kewl, a hotel in Kew Gardens, rents out the upper part of the hotel as a luxury hotel with rooms at $2,400, but the lower part is a Comfort Inn which provides rooms to the homeless at $5,250 a month. This is Councilwoman Karen Koslowitz’s district. Often the police will not give statistics on crime in homeless shelters. Some people say the police lower the status of a crime to make it seem less severe.

https://www.timesledger.com/stories/2017/41/harris_2017_10_13_q.html

Octoberber 10, 2017
Sunnyside Hotel Shelter Opening ‘Blindsided’ the Community, Angry Pols Say

“This community finds itself once again blindsided with the last-minute announcement of yet another hotel conversion,” Congressman Joe Crowley wrote in a letter to Mayor Bill de Blasio last week that accused the administration of opening the site with “no prior notice, and zero community input.”

https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20171010/sunnyside/homeless-shelter-best-western-hotel-3805-hunters-point-ave-jimmy-van-bramer

Octoberber 9, 2017
Homeless Placed in New Hotel Sites Despite City’s Pledge to Phase Them Out

MIDTOWN — The city is still using commercial hotels to house homeless New Yorkers, despite a pledge last year to phase them out following a fatal stabbing at a homeless hotel.

https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20171009/midtown/homeless-shelter-hotels-cluster-sites-bill-de-blasio

Octoberber 10, 2017
City reserves 57 rooms of Row NYC Hotel for homeless housing

The program has used the Row since September, and both the community board and local elected officials were notified — but not the public and certainly not those staying at the hotel.

http://nypost.com/2017/10/10/city-reserves-57-rooms-of-row-nyc-hotel-for-homeless-housing/

Octoberber 6, 2017
Bill’s hotel bill comes due on homeless policy

To spend the equivalent of $60,000 a year on rooms lacking even a kitchen as a gesture of necessary compassion is to trash both the money and credibility to help New York’s needy.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/bill-hotel-bill-due-homeless-policy-article-1.3544001

Octoberber 5, 2017
Not Kewl: Luxury Apartment Residents Angry About Sharing Building With Homeless

Joe Keane owns the property next door and said his homeless neighbors are already affecting his property value.

“I was trying to show an apartment I have for rent yesterday, and the people ran away because they found out about the homeless being in the building next door,” Keane said.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/10/05/kew-gardens-luxury-apartments/

Octoberber 5, 2017
City Opens ‘Surprise Shelter’ in Williamsburg Hotel, Angering Neighbors

WILLIAMSBURG — A “surprise shelter” opened over the summer in a former Union Avenue hotel without notification to the community, an indication that the city has quietly backpedaled on a pledge to warn neighbors at least seven days in an advance before moving in homeless people.

https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20171005/williamsburg/surprise-shelter-homeless-residents-angry-metropolitan-437-union-ave

Octoberber 3, 2017
Residents shocked to share luxury tower with the homeless

Residents of a Queens luxury tower were startled to learn last week that they’ll be sharing their building with homeless people.

http://nypost.com/2017/10/03/residents-shocked-to-share-luxury-tower-with-the-homeless/

September 15, 2017
Protests Considered Against Norwood Shelter

Following acrimony over the city Department of Homeless Services’ proposal to establish a homeless shelter across from an elementary school on Webster Avenue in Norwood, Community Board 7 still appears to be at an impasse in getting the city to reconsider.

http://www.norwoodnews.org/id=24227&story=protests-considered-norwood-shelter/

September 14, 2017
Sharp increase in risk-posing sex offenders who live in N.Y. shelters: report

The 21 offenders now living with homeless families is far more than in any year since 2007. In the last decade, the number has hovered between 6 and 11.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/sharp-increase-risk-posing-sex-offenders-living-ny-shelters-article-1.3496587

August 19, 2017
Ho to make a mint off the homeless in de Blasio’s New York
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Stagg’s nonprofit partner, Praxis Housing Initiatives, has netted a $5.3 million-a-year contract from the Department for Homeless Services. It will pay Stagg $2.4 million in annual rent for the 83 units, which works out to $2,400 per apartment.

Stagg told The Post, “It’s not like we’re bringing in the Brink’s truck. This is not a windfall.”

Others beg to differ. Charles Moerdler, who chairs the local community board’s land-use committee, thunders about “a handful of developers who are exploiting the city and taxpayers in a manner that is inappropriate and against the public interest.”

http://nypost.com/2017/08/19/how-to-make-a-mint-off-the-homeless-in-de-blasios-new-york/

August 10, 2017
This homeless couple prefers living in a tent over a shelter

But in the meantime, the couple said they preferred the solitude and safety of their tent to the city’s shelter system.

“Shelters, they got crackheads, they got dope fiends,” Jermaine said.

“I’m just trying to, you know, be somewhere safe. An environment where I don’t have to worry about missing my stuff.”

http://nypost.com/2017/08/10/this-homeless-couple-prefers-living-in-a-tent-over-a-shelter/

August 2, 2017
Man’s finger bitten off in homeless shelter melee

One man had a finger bitten off and another was nearly beaten to death during a bloody brawl at a Brooklyn homeless shelter, police said.

http://nypost.com/2017/08/02/mans-finger-bitten-off-in-homeless-shelter-melee/

July 31, 2017
Homeless people living in FiDi hotels can’t afford food

Homeless mom Leeyen Riggon, who is eight-months pregnant, said she and her two daughters, ages 2 and 6, have spent the past three months crammed into a room at the Holiday Inn Express at 126 Water St. She also showed The Post a photo of a bedbug on the linen Friday.

“My room is one bed, no microwave, no refrigerator, and I am sleeping on the bed with my two kids,” said Riggon, 25. “It’s just terrible being here. I don’t get treated like a human; I am treated like I’m in jail.”

http://nypost.com/2017/07/31/homeless-people-living-in-fidi-hotels-cant-afford-food/

July 25, 2017
Developer cuts deal to build homeless shelter instead of apartments

Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz said he was told by the developer in January that the building would be a rental — only to get a notification from the Mayor’s Office a couple of weeks ago that it had selected a not-for-profit, Praxis, to run it as a homeless shelter.
“It’s a classic bait-and- switch,” Dinowitz said. “Nobody likes to be lied to.”

http://nypost.com/2017/07/25/developer-cuts-deal-to-build-homeless-shelter-instead-of-apartments/

July 28, 2017
Homeless shelter that housed sex assault suspects opened in ‘secret’

The homeless shelter that housed four young men accused in a gang sex assault on a Queens churchgoer opened last year without any notice to the neighborhood — because “confidentiality and privacy are important” to the program, City Hall said Monday.

http://nypost.com/2017/07/18/homeless-shelter-that-housed-sex-assault-suspects-opened-in-secret/

June 20, 2017
Families deal with extreme temperatures in NYC homeless shelters during heat wave

Despite an announcement last year that the city was cutting ties with the troubled homeless shelter provider, the Human Resources Administration just renewed a $2.7 million one-year contract with the Bushwick Economic Development Corporation (Bedco).

In January, Bedco had 185 open violations across homeless shelters and cluster sites it managed, including at 720 Hunts Point Avenue in the Bronx, where two babies died from lethal steam burns from a faulty radiator. The city announced in February that it would no longer work with Bedco, following the deaths of the two young girls.

https://therealdeal.com/2017/06/20/city-renews-2-7m-contract-with-troubled-homeless-shelter-provider/

June 13, 2017
Families deal with extreme temperatures in NYC homeless shelters during heat wave

“It’s a heat wave, about the second one, I believe, and now there’s no air,” said Greene.

In this case, it’s the Westway Inn in Astoria, Queens, where Greene says the air conditioning unit in her room, at least she thinks it’s an air conditioning unit, has not worked for weeks.

Greene adds that several other rooms have the same problem.

“My daughter is constantly getting sick. There’s no air. I complained. I called 311. I complained to the case manager. Complain to the manager. Then, when you go downstairs to they part of the building – it’s nothing but air in their offices,” said Greene.

http://pix11.com/2017/06/13/families-deal-with-extreme-temperatures-in-nyc-homeless-shelters-during-heat-wave/

June 9, 2017
Keep homeless kids safe in their shelters: Promised Administration for Children’s Services reforms don’t go far enough

Next, ACS should place case workers on site in family shelters so that they can be close to their clients and save hundreds of hours traveling to various locations to try and supervise these families and provide services. If a family shelter has 200 families (like the Pan Am homeless shelter) and one-quarter of them, or 50, have open cases ACS can place three full-time case workers in the building.

http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/homeless-kids-safe-shelters-article-1.3234663

June 8, 2017
Disabled homeless father has waited years for a housing transfer to be closer to his son

Germain Dumont lives in a Bronx homeless shelter and says he waited five years for a transfer to Brooklyn to be near his son.

http://pix11.com/2017/06/08/disabled-homeless-father-has-waited-years-for-a-housing-transfer-to-be-closer-to-his-son/

June 1, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: Bellevue Shelter Residents Have Been Exposing Themselves To Children, Neighbors Say

“There have been quite a few upsetting incidents this year,” she said, “Grabbing young girls, exposing themselves in front of kids, walking across the street and seeing someone with no pants on.”

Pennacchia’s husband shared photos of homeless men sleeping on the sidewalk near their apartment building across the street from the shelter on East 30th Street and 1st Ave, as well as a picture of a man caught performing a lewd act in public.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/06/01/bellevue-mens-homeless-shelter/

May 28, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: Family of homeless man murdered in Harlem shelter by roommate was never notified

Detectives found several knives in the room – leading Davis to wonder how it’s possible that the weapons got past security at the main entrance.

“This place is supposed to be a safe haven,” she said. “There weren’t supposed to be knives in that room. This should never have happened.”

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/manhattan/family-homeless-man-slain-harlem-shelter-left-dark-article-1.3203159

May 16, 2017
Security tight at homeless hotel in Harlem after stabbing death

“No. No NYPD at all, only DHS police. When you go in that building at night, you gotta wonder, am I gonna get robbed today? Am I walking up the steps, somebody gonna rape me today?” said tenant Yolanda Cooks.

http://pix11.com/2017/05/16/security-tight-at-homeless-hotel-in-harlem-after-stabbing-death/

May 15, 2017
Another fatal stabbing in another Harlem homeless shelter in less than 4 days!

Woman fatally stabs man in Harlem homeless shelter

HARLEM, Manhattan — A woman fatally stabbed a man inside a Harlem homeless shelter Monday, police said.

http://pix11.com/2017/05/15/woman-fatally-stabs-man-in-harlem-homeless-shelter/

May 12, 2017
Two stabbed, one fatally, in knife battle at Harlem homeless shelter

Joseph Villard, 44, was stabbed multiple times in the chest and died on the fifth floor of the Cecil Ivory House on W. 132nd St. near Adam Clayton Powell Blvd. about 7:15 a.m., official said.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/stabbed-fatally-knife-battle-harlem-shelter-article-1.3159364

May 8, 2017
Trail of blood used to ID suspect in horrific tourist attack

Robinson was arrested last year when he failed to update his address with the NYPD, as required by the sex-offender registry. He had been living at a homeless shelter until moving out in June.

http://nypost.com/2017/05/08/cops-identify-suspect-in-horrific-attack-on-tourist/

May 7, 2017
News Closeup: Inside the New York’s homeless crisis

Thousand of homeless families failed to received basic social services!
Mario Diaz: Use of commercial hotel jumped from 35 to roughly 80
Jay Dow: due the lack of social services, the city is essentially warehousing the homeless population

http://pix11.com/2017/05/07/news-closeup-inside-the-new-yorks-homeless-crisis/

May 7, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: Cops on alert after robberies surge around Brooklyn men’s homeless shelter

In one case, two men and a woman approached a victim and stole $10. In the second, two suspects punched a male victim in the eye and stole his EBT and debit card, police said. Marcus Springs, 44, and Ronald Fields, 60, were arrested and charged with robbery. Both are former shelter system clients, the law enforcement source said.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/robberies-surge-brooklyn-men-homeless-shelter-article-1.3146038

May 4, 2017
De Blasio Addresses Queens Concerns At Town Hall

One resident named Candice, who currently lives in the Metro Motel, which was converted into a homeless shelter, held up her hand for nearly two hours before finally being called upon.

“We have no housing specialist,” Candice said. “I am a Section 8 recipient and I’ve been on Section 8 for two years with a voucher and I’ve been at the shelter for two years and I am stuck there. I am not getting the proper help that I need and that’s my issue.”

Candice, who held up her two-bedroom voucher, said that she has had no one to help her learn how to use her voucher.
http://queenstribune.com/de-blasio-addresses-queens-concerns-town-hall/

May 3, 2017
Brooklyn homeless shelters see bloody beatings over three-day span (WARNING GRAPHIC CONTENT)

The mayhem began at the Samaritan Village Shelter on Myrtle Ave. in Bushwick at 8:43 a.m. on Sunday.
Jermaine Saint Clare, 44, a shelter resident, was caught in a horrifying video beating another man in the face using his belt buckle — sending blood flying with his repeated blows.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/nyc-homeless-shelters-bloody-beatings-3-day-span-graphic-article-1.3131944

May 1, 2017
Stolen gun found at Brooklyn family homeless shelter

Authorities found a loaded, stolen handgun in a closet at a Brooklyn family homeless shelter Monday afternoon, police said.

The security director at the Stockholm Family Shelter on Stockholm St. by Central Ave. in Bushwick found the weapon — a .380-caliber Magnum — after receiving an anonymous tip, sources familiar with the case said Monday.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/stolen-gun-found-brooklyn-family-homeless-shelter-article-1.3127984

April 27, 2017
Internal Reports Show Violence, Arrests at City Shelters Jumped in 2016

Now NY1 has obtained hundreds of internal reports from the city’s shelter system from January through June of last year. These reports unveil a system struggling to keep that violence in check, and a crackdown by the NYPD to regain control.

http://www.ny1.com/nyc/all-boroughs/politics/2017/04/27/ny1-exclusive-internal-reports-violence-arrests-nyc-shelters-increase-2016.html

April 27, 2017
I-Team: Same Hotel Room Costs $190 for Homeless, $145 for Everyone Else | NBC New York

The I-Team compared a sample of 171 hotel reservations booked by the NYC Department of Homeless Services with prices for the same rooms advertised to tourists and business travelers on websites like Hotels.com, Priceline.com, ChoiceHotels.com and Expedia. Two thirds of the time, the room rates offered online were cheaper than the rates the city paid to house homeless families.

http://www.nbcnewyork.com/investigations/Hotel-Cost-Rate-Homeless-More-Customer-You-Pay-Tax-Disparity-New-York-City-Hidden-Camera-Investigation-420618143.html

April 17, 2017
Report: Cost Of Renting Hotel Rooms For Homeless People Has Risen 600% Since 2015

The average nightly cost of housing homeless people in commercial hotel rooms in NYC surged approximately 600 percent between November 2015 and this February, according to the latest analysis from Comptroller Scott Stringer’s office. According to the report, the average cost increased from $82,214 to $576,203 per night, city-wide.
http://gothamist.com/2017/04/17/_the_comptroller_is_behind.php

April 7, 2017
2 Men Arrested for Heroin at Troubled 30th St. Homeless Shelter, NYPD Says

Two ex-cons — including one on parole for attempted murder — were arrested for holding bags of heroin at a troubled homeless shelter on East 30th Street, officials said.

https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20170407/kips-bay/30th-street-homeless-shelter-drugs-heroin-arrest

April 6, 2017
Cops can’t keep this homeless man in custody

A homeless man escaped after being arrested by Department of Homeless Services officers — and was then caught by the NYPD for a separate crime and released by a judge because the DHS cops never reported him missing, The Post has learned.

http://nypost.com/2017/04/06/cops-cant-keep-this-homeless-man-in-custody/

April 6, 2017
Teen boy arrested for raping 14-year-old girl inside Brooklyn shelter

A teenage boy raped a 14-year-old girl inside a Brooklyn shelter, police said Thursday.

Malik Belk, 16, allegedly grabbed the victim from behind, pulled her pants down and raped her inside the Flatlands Family Residence on Ave. D. near Linden Blvd. about 3 p.m. Wednesday, cops said.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/teen-boy-arrested-raping-girl-14-brooklyn-shelter-article-1.3025040

April 2, 2017
These are the 30 posh hotels where NYC places its homeless

The city spent $72.9 million on hotel housing in the year ending Oct. 31, 2016, a report by Comptroller Scott Stringer says.

“This is a massive crisis, and the city is spending hundreds of thousands of dollars — per night — on hotels. They’re ill-suited to help families get back on their
feet, and they’re extraordinarily costly,” Stringer told The Post.

http://nypost.com/2017/04/02/these-are-the-30-posh-hotels-where-nyc-places-its-homeless/

March 31, 2017
One-year-old dies after falling unconscious at homeless shelter

Shelter residents told the Post that while the hotel is safe and clean, they feel stranded by the city bureaucracy.

“There’s a lot of frustration with the families living here,” said Tania, 30, who moved into the hotel last October and is supposed to move out to Long Island City but is having trouble getting a housing voucher. “It’s tough to get out.”

She added: “I think some people come in here with a lot of baggage mentally and emotionally. We are just not being provided the right resources to help us get back on our feet.”

http://nypost.com/2017/03/31/one-year-old-dies-after-falling-unconscious-at-homeless-shelter/

March 26, 2017
Homeless man’s nonstop drunken singing is driving people crazy

The baritone bum also routinely relieves himself in a corner of the outdoor plaza, within sight of a storefront that’s home to The Playroom NYC, a children’s amusement center.

http://nypost.com/2017/03/26/homeless-mans-nonstop-drunken-singing-is-driving-people-crazy/

March 22, 2017
Homeless Woman Spits at Passersby on NYC Street: Neighbors

The woman, who’s believed to be homeless and mentally disturbed, has been spitting at passersby for years. But Nick Goodman has gotten so fed up he’s created a Facebook page called “Spitting Lady of the Upper East Side” to keep tabs on her and avoid her.

http://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/Homeless-Woman-Spits-Passersby-Pedestrians-Upper-East-Side-Sidewalk-New-York-City-Manhattan-417251053.html

March 22, 2017
New York Spends $1.2 Billion a Year on Homelessness

When Bill de Blasio ran for mayor in 2013, he built his campaign on ending New York’s “tale of two cities,” promising to focus resources on those who had been left out of the city’s success. As mayor, he instituted a new voucher program and increased funding for legal aid and emergency rental assistance to those on the verge of eviction. The city’s Department of Homeless Services now has an annual budget of over $1 billion.

And yet the crisis has only gotten worse. Per capita, homelessness is higher in Washington, D.C., and Boston than it is in New York, but in terms of sheer numbers, no other U.S. city has such a large homelessness problem. And that 60,000 figure represents only the people who can be counted in shelters. It does not include all those drifting from one friend or family member’s couch to the next, or sleeping throughout the city under awnings, in parks, on subways, on stoops.

http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2017/03/nyc-homelessness-crisis.html

March 14, 2017
‘You walk through here, you feel like you’re in a Third World country’

Many homeless people brought along suitcases and large bags, making it hard for some straphangers to find a spot to sit and leaving cars reeking.

http://nypost.com/2017/03/14/homeless-take-over-subway-cars-to-escape-storm/

March 10, 2017
Homeless man repeatedly clubs woman in purse-snatching attempt

Williams continued to bludgeon the woman in the head as she held onto her bag, according to officials. Unable to pry the purse from the woman’s tight grip, the mugger fled empty-handed.

The woman took herself to NYU Langone Medical Center for treatment, police said.

Cops arrested Williams, a resident of the Bellevue Men’s Shelter on E. 30th St. near First Ave., around 11 p.m. Thursday.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/homeless-man-repeatedly-clubs-woman-purse-snatching-attempt-article-1.2994136

March 2, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: Schizophrenic homeless man apologizes for trying to push woman in front of Brooklyn subway train

March 2, 2017
Homeless Santa cuffed for groping women at Manhattan subway station

Cops arrested a homeless man they say groped two women in the subway while wearing a Santa hat, authorities said Thursday.

David Cruz, 33, is accused of grabbing two women’s backsides inside the subway station at 23rd St. and Fifth Ave. during a half hour stretch starting at 7 p.m. on Feb. 8, police said.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/homeless-santa-cuffed-groping-women-city-subway-station-article-1.2986721

Martina Balestra was nearly killed more than a year ago when David Ffrench shoved her from behind near the edge of the platform at the Borough Hall station in downtown Brooklyn.

But Balestra managed to grab a pillar and keep her balance as the Manhattan-bound train barreled into the station. That saved her life.

Ffrench, 47, who was living at a shelter in Harlem at the time, was arrested on a street near the station.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/mentally-ill-man-push-woman-subway-tracks-article-1.2986480

February 20, 2017

Ozone Park anti-drop-in center crowd promises resistance

Councilman Ruben Wills (D-South Jamaica) discussed the matter in a statement, issued in conjunction with Miller last Friday.

“The current deficiencies within the Department of Homeless Services and its providers have led to both unintentional and blatant violations of State statutes that govern the movement of certain sex offenders (i.e. Skyway); the same is likely to happen here,” the councilman said, referring to the South Ozone Park shelter. “I cannot in good faith endorse any such proposal under these circumstances, and have repeatedly urged DHS and Breaking Ground to reconsider.”
http://www.qchron.com/editions/south/ozone-park-anti-drop-in-center-crowd-promises-resistance/article_e1c5701e-f78f-11e6-96b8-c7207d961bb1.html

February 15, 2017
Bronx residents terrified after 1 killed, 2 sickened by rare infection caused by rat urine

PIX11 has learned Parkash also operates three buildings in which the NYC Department of Homeless Services rents right units, including at least one at 750 Grand Concourse.
http://pix11.com/2017/02/15/bronx-residents-terrified-after-1-killed-2-sickened-by-rare-infection-caused-by-rat-urine/

February 14, 2017
EXCLUSIVE: HOMELESS FAMILIES PLACED IN BUILDINGS RUN BY NYC’S WORST LANDLORDS

The death of two baby sisters caused by a radiator valve that exploded in a homeless family’s cluster site apartment last December has put intense pressure on the mayor to either improve oversight or end their use. What defies common sense, though, is why the city pays up to $3,000 per apartment to place families in the buildings of some of the city’s most notorious landlords.

“You are making thousands and thousands of dollars sheltering the city’s homeless, yet they are in some of your apartment buildings in disrepair. Why don’t you make some of these fixes, please talk to us,” we asked Schwartz, who did not respond.
http://abc7ny.com/news/exclusive-homeless-families-placed-in-buildings-run-by-nycs-worst-landlords/1754481/

February 14, 2017
Ozone Park hotel has been used as a homeless shelter for months without notice: lawmakers

Homeless families have been living at a Comfort Inn in Ozone Park for nearly five months, but the city apparently didn’t tell anyone in the community about it until this week.
http://qns.com/story/2017/02/14/ozone-park-hotel-used-homeless-shelter-months-without-notice-lawmakers/

February 13, 2017
Homeless hotel causing problems in Ozone Park

“It’s filthy there,” said Dominic, a resident who lives nearby. “There’s food just laying on the windowsills all the time … people smoking marijuana outside.”
Dominic said in addition to people smoking marijuana, he’s spotted people he believes to be living in the hotel engaging in sexual activity.

http://www.qchron.com/editions/homeless-hotel-causing-problems-in-ozone-park/article_3c997246-f214-11e6-855a-af126e2866be.html?_dc=239668414200.09598

February 09, 2017
Ozone Park Protests Homeless Shelter

Leslie Patterson, Councilman Ruben Wills’ (D-Jamaica) chief of staff said when Breaking Ground files a permit with the NYC Department Of Buildings, they will move forward with a lawsuit against the owner of the property, Breaking Ground and the city’s Department of Homeless Services. The basis of the lawsuit would argue that the site could place sex offenders within less than 1,000 feet from a school. However, Patterson said the basis of the lawsuit may change, depending on the plan for the shelter, once it is filed with the DOB.
http://queenstribune.com/ozone-park-protests-homeless-shelter/

February 08, 2017
Child abuse and neglect cases, homeless shelter population on rise in NYC, Mayor de Blasio reports

The report also detailed more bad news regarding another of the mayor’s headaches: the rising tide of homeless.

The average number of homeless individuals staying in shelters each day rose between 8% and 12% in all categories over the same time period from 2015 to last year.

Since de Blasio arrived at City Hall, the total shelter population has jumped from 53,000 to 60,000.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/child-abuse-cases-homelessness-rise-nyc-de-blasio-reports-article-1.2967893

February 7, 2017
New York City schools overwhelmed by student homelessness

Omega now lives in a six-story Halsey Street shelter for homeless families near P.S. 5, where her three children attend school. “For five years I have been in and out of the city shelter system and have been trying that long to get a voucher for permanent housing. I came to this meeting looking to see if there is somebody I can talk to, to find permanent housing. I did not.”

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2017/02/07/nycs-f07.html

February 6, 2017
CBS2 Exclusive: NYC Begins Using 3 More Hotels To House Homeless

The Department of Homeless Services is apparently so touchy about the increased dependence on hotels that it would not tell Kramer how many rooms are now being used. The department told Kramer she had to file a Freedom of Information Act request, and said the information might not be available, if at all, for five weeks.

Mascali said the city is required to tally how many rooms it is paying for — every night.

http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2017/02/06/more-homeless-hotels/

February 1, 2017
Department of Homeless Services fired officer for reporting co-workers selling drugs at shelter: lawsuit

“DHS isn’t running a shelter. They are running a drug cartel,” said Rodriguez’s lawyer, Jerold Levine.
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/dhs-fired-officer-reporting-co-workers-selling-drugs-lawsuit-article-1.2961924

February 1, 2017
Kudos to NYC Parks

The Department of Homeless Services, for one, caught its share of flak in late September, when board officials called for the resignation of its leaders over the use of the Van Cortlandt Motel as a homeless shelter and, according to board members, for reneging on the city’s promises to find other accommodations for homeless people.

http://www.riverdalepress.com/stories/Kudos-to-NYC-Parks,61674

January 30, 2017
Comptroller Audit Reveals Potential Problems With DHS Providers oversight

The audit did find that DHS provided excessive cash advances to Samaritan beyond the amounts dictated by DHS’ internal guidelines. DHS also failed to fully recoup these excess cash advances. DHS Fiscal Manual allows for service providers to receive in advance no more than one-sixth of the annual contract amount. The audit determined that DHS had paid Samaritan $1.5 million in excess cash advances beyond what was allowed by the guidelines. DHS had also failed to recoup $346,337 of the excess amount.

http://www.citylandnyc.org/comptroller-audit-dhs/

January 26, 2017
CityViews: Homelessness Crisis Demands a New Kind of Shelter—Not More Hotel Rooms

More than half of all homeless families today are sheltered in these unregulated accommodations at a cost to the taxpayer of roughly $250 million dollars a year. And the recent death of two children in one of these facilities, like with Koch, is the de Blasio Administration’s wake up call to stop depending so heavily on their use.

http://citylimits.org/2017/01/26/cityviews-homelessness-crisis-demands-a-new-kind-of-shelter-not-more-hotel-rooms/

January 20, 2017
Nonprofit overseeing Bronx apartment where toddlers died racked up hundreds of violations

A report from City Comptroller Scott Stringer last month that more than half of the 16,026 open violations at all the city’s cluster sites are in buildings owned by just 11 landlords. Mayor Bill de Blasio campaigned on getting rid of cluster sites, but the number of units has risen during his tenure as mayor

https://therealdeal.com/2017/01/20/nonprofit-overseeing-bronx-apartment-where-toddlers-died-racked-up-hundreds-of-violations/

January 19, 2017
Homeless housed in sub-human and unsafe conditions in NYC: report

“It is unconscionable to allow children and families to be forced to live in these violation ridden hotels and cluster sites. These sites lack the basic services that homeless families should have access to and make living a normal life difficult, if not impossible,” said State Senator Diane Savino, one of seven senators in the Independent Democratic Conference, which produced the report.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/homeless-housed-sub-human-unsafe-conditions-nyc-report-article-1.2950569

January 15, 2017
Reports of homeless people more than doubled last year

Calls and phone messages about homeless people swelled 106 percent, from 24,625 in 2015 to 50,783 last year, records show. More than half of last year’s calls were the city’s homeless-outreach workers reporting the presence of a homeless person, records show.

http://nypost.com/2017/01/15/reports-of-homeless-people-more-than-doubled-last-year/

January 9, 2017
Operator of Shelter Where 2 Girls Died Last Month Hit With $532K Tax Lien

Boswell, who earns $194,213 a year and drives a brand-new Cadillac, has had his own tax problems with Uncle Sam. The IRS has hit him with six liens between 1995 and 2013 for a total of $230,374. Records show that he has paid back those debts, most of them in 2015.
DNAinfo also reported that a lawsuit once accused Boswell of trying to extort a business partner and bribe workers at the Department of Homeless Services.

https://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20170109/bushwick/bedco-radiator-scylee-vayoh-ambrose-ibanez-ambrose

January 6, 2017
NYC Homeless Shelter Security Got So Bad, The NYPD Now Has To Intervene

City Comptroller Scott Stringer released an alarming report in winter 2015 on “nightmare conditions” in the city’s shelters, including entire buildings with no guards. And a followup investigation by the New York Daily News last March revealed that 1,687 “critical incidents” — 826 of them violent — were recorded at city homeless shelters in 2015, among them brutal beatings, child abuse and rape.

http://patch.com/new-york/new-york-city/nyc-homeless-shelter-safety-got-so-bad-nypd-had-intervene

January 6, 2017
Manhattan homeless shelter becoming hotbed for drugs

A Manhattan homeless shelter has quietly been a hotbed of drug busts, with police making at least four arrests in the last week, the Daily News has learned.

http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/nyc-crime/police-arrest-suspected-drug-dealer-nyc-homeless-shelter-article-1.2936695