Homeless In Anchorage Alaska Part 4/The Sleepng Mats at Brother Francis Shelter Are Filthy and Much More

Part 1, part 2, part 3.
The bedbugs are disgusted, they only live in the dorms where the mats are cleaner in the higher caste area and they refuse to sleep on the floor on a mat with those of us in the lower caste of the homeless at Brother Francis Shelter (Actually the mats on the floor are pretty comfortable that is not the issue). The bedbugs especially hate to sleep with an individual who is not given a blanket or sheet, that is just too rough for them.

It is well past time the public knew about the abuses at Brother Francis Shelter. More than adequate chances and threats of exposure were made, that was a waste of time as they have issues with some of their supervisors and minions monitors. There are also some good people who are supervisors and monitors, but as we know from Dr. Zimbardo's work even good people in an evil system will do bad things.

They claimed to be working on changing procedures so the mats would be cleaned. I waited, they got cleaner for a few days and then the usual Brother Francis regression took over. I took the set of wipes I used to wipe down a mat (it is impossible to clean them with wipes)  pictured on this blog post from a mat I slept on to Mayor Berkowitz's office. I took another set to a meeting with the Director of Social Services, Lisa Acquino. Before I went I told someone she would bring another person with her. That person showed up a few minutes after her. LOL. Why did I know that? I've been communicating with them for a while about problems...months. The response has been lip service from the top and retaliation from some of the supervisors and their minions. That evening they left me a container of wipes which I shared with lots of people, they were pretty much gone that night. Every day I have been wiping down my mat, then wiping with wet paper towels, the mats are still dirty when I do this. Sometimes like last night I get one that is not very dirty, but other times they are quite filthy. The mats can't be cleaned with wipes, but that is what their procedure is. They claim the wiped down mats are sanitized...no. The wet paper towels I use to wipe off some of the chemicals after using the wipes are just as dirty as the wipes due to years of filth, many of those mats look dirty. They are on the dirty floor, peed on, people who never bathe and hardly change their clothing sleep on them.

One night I wiped my mat and showed the wipes to the supervisor who says, "I believe you were told to put those in a baggie and show them to"...someone I don't remember who because, not true. What the hell is he talking about? I have been doing all of this on my own, Catholic Social Services has not originated anything.

There are two classes of homeless people, well actually three at Brother Francis Shelter. If you are disabled and can't participate in their programs you are shit out of luck and get to sleep on a mat on the floor, even if you are in a wheel chair and partially paralyzed from a stroke. The people who can participate in their chore programs can sleep in the back on a jail boat. There is another class that gets special food, privileges and are served Providence Gruel in the evening before everyone else. Yes I know the public thinks they feed people a meal in the evening, no it's gruel and usually a piece of some kind of bread along with food safety violations.

Those mats in the dorms are cleaner as they don't get put directly on the floor and people who have less problems with incontinence of urine and feces sleep on them along with those who actually take baths. There is a problem in those dorms with the jail boats however, bedbugs. So the truth is there is not a good choice. They get to lay down and rest more back there which of course would be nice for people with health problems. More on that later.

They wipe the mats down with some chemicals every day, so people are laying on chemicals. They are not able to understand why this is not healthy trust me I've tried. At Brother Francis Shelter there is a blanket shortage. More on that later too. The chemicals are one reason why two blankets or a blanket and a sheet are given in many shelters, one for the bottom to act as a barrier and then one for a cover. Over a long period of time they knew at Brother Francis the blankets were being stolen. Women have been sleeping on bare mats due to no blankets or sheets which includes me, except for that one night when I slept on newspaper over the cement floor for two hours, oh wait, I was not actually sleeping due to the shivering, because...massive assholery of the pathological type. There were 16 to 20 of us night before last.

Last night after I tried to get a sheet I was told only those in the higher caste could request one due to them "earning it" because all people with disabilities at Brother Francis are considered scum sucking leaches, especially those with invisible disabilities. Have these people ever heard of the Americans With Disabilities Act you are wondering, no they apparently have not along with other things like the germ theory of disease. They will soon be educated. I have many times in the past requested blankets due to chills from hypothyroidism, ME/cfs and Intersitial Cystitis and this crazy wind blowing system they have in the building. Please note I asked for a sheet because I was not having chills and thought another person might be. They knew all the way to Lisa Acquino the director of Catholic Social Services, they knew of specific cases, that "clients" were going in the storage room and helping themselves to them and that those who did the right thing and asked for a blanket were treated like garbage by their staff. Many, many phone calls were made and many incident reports were written by myself and other people complained as well. More on begging for blankets later. I have no idea why people would chose to sleep outside.

Now they are keeping the few blankets they have left under lock and key. The BFS caste system designed and implemented by Catholic Social Services which involves discrimination based on disability and age, but they really hate those invisible disabilities especially if a homeless activist evil-bitch-woman has one, even using torture to make the person sick on purpose and then interfering with their ability to get health care, because Catholic charity...Catholic hospital, you get the picture. More on that too, I have documentation and you know how I just live to scan those crazy documents and post them. Whew!

Yes I do get retaliated against when I write about my adventures in hell.


Homeless in Anchorage Alaska/Part 3/Brother Francis Shelter Can't be Fixed As Long As CSS is in Control of it.

Part 1, part 2 .

I have been sleep deprived for weeks and my health over time has deteriorated significantly, so sorry for any errors. After reporting horrible problems for months at Brother Francis Shelter, being targeted by serial bullies, watching people suffer, suffering myself, watching as so many people die and seeing vulnerable people thrown out in the middle of the night rather than get appropriate interventions, watching people banned from Beans Cafe to go hungry and not have water or a bathroom, watching the people living outside not have water or a bathroom, watching them throw the possessions of people who had almost nothing in a dumpster because they left it at the shelter, getting up to go to the bus stop and seeing people lying around outside on the ground, having people outside beg me for water in the morning, seeing people lying next to the building at night through a window, watching as they allowed people to steal the blankets, they knew and now watching and experiencing people sleeping on filthy mats without a sheet or blanket, it also gets cold, discrimination against women, discrimination based on disability, sleep deprivation due to the horrible conditions that especially many women have to sleep in, having to breath second hand cigarette smoke, being exposed to Spice smoke that made me very ill...I could keep going all day. I have contacted agencies multiple times who make excuses about the large number of elderly, mentally ill and disabled people in the shelter asking why are they not placed in appropriate safe places where they can get their special needs met. Right now HSS is pretty much on vacation, but little has been done and I called them often with either general problems or to report a specific person who needed help. My first call was essentially to ask what in the hell? There are issues with infection control and food safety, there is lack of supervision of behavioral problems, there is favoritism, bullying and also retaliation.
Mayor Berkowitiz and his staff care deeply about the homeless people this I know due to telling them what goes on at BFS very often. They are scrambling to get grants for housing, but there are budget issues so it will not happen very fast. Dan Sullivan and members of the Anchorage Assembly designed a homeless program that created more homeless people because all they wanted to do was keep them out of sight for business people and homeowners. This has allowed large numbers to accumulate during the period of time with little housing, chemical dependency treatment or mental health treatment. There is also little health care and many lies have been told to the people of Anchorage about that. Years of little health care and horrible conditions are one of the many contributing factors to the deaths and also much suffering. The problem can't be fixed over night, but the shelter where people have to stay is a hell hole, overcrowded, miserable, poorly maintained. My friend and I now call going into the shelter, going through the gates of hell. Often we have to wait outside the door an hour or more while hungry people watch staff eating, women have to pee behind the dumpsters, the men do too and elderly or disabled people sit in their wheel chairs or on their walkers in pain and exhausted. Intoxicants and others come to eat and/or shower, but the wait can be so long they leave. I am usually exhausted, dizzy and then develop tachycardia. Then add abusive, bullying, retaliatory staff who seek to harm and you have a Zimbardo nightmare. It is also often not safe, more on this later. No agency has control over what Catholic Social Services does, they can't be moved to do anything. I just can't believe what they are allowed to get away with. They treat the complaints much like the decades of pedophile priests, ignore, cover up and lie. I have no trust in them at all at this point. Being totally dysfunctional and very health harming both physically and mentally Brother Francis Shelter needs to be declared a disaster area, the people need to be taken to a more appropriate place that is safe and then...


Homeless in Anchorage Alaska Part 2/There's An Angry Homeless Person in the Lobby

Part 1

An angry homeless person could be in the lobby behind this door. LOL.
I went to Mayor Berkowitz's office Monday after the bus W/C incident in part 1 and announced, "Angry Homeless person in the lobby." The guy at the desk cracked up and so far seems to be the only one who gets my weird sense of humor. I told him the story and he gave me a phone number and said they would contact People Mover. Then he told me "I'll have him call you" which I thought meant the mayor so when I left I thought, I won't hold my breath on that one. But the next day when I went to the mayor’s office and said, "Angry homeless person in the lobby, day two" I found out he meant the Ombudsman Hess who I have talked to quite a bit and realize there is no point in continuing along that line, he's helpless I tell you, helpless to do anything about any homelessness problems, especially if Brother Francis Shelter is involved. He was the head of former Mayor Dan Sullivan's Homeless Task Force, LOL.
Went to Mayor Berkowitz's office and said, “Angry homeless person in the lobby, day 2.” Then a woman said, “OK I’ll call security.” The guy that was there yesterday when I came in was cracking up. Then she wanted to know what that homeless person was doing, then I told her it was me. LOL. 

FB Wednesday:
Around 9 AM I went to city hall, used the bathroom and then came out and said to the security guard, “I just want to alert you there is an angry homeless person here in the lobby.” There are only two people, me and him, he looks around, has a puzzled look and says, “Where?” I point at myself with the dental pic I had in my hand and said, “It’s me, please tell Berkowitz’s staff and make sure you say, “day three.” He looks puzzled and very serious as I walk away and say, “Really someone should call security.” I keep a straight face until I get outside. 

FB Thursday:
Went to City Hall, used the bathroom and as I left yelled to the security guard that there is an angry homeless person in the lobby, day four. He gave me the thumbs up. Then I said, on day five publishing begins. He probably thinks I’m crazy which was part of my evil plan, LOL. Yes I am, in the best way possible, crazy courageous.

FB Friday:
Today I went to the mayor's office and had to wait for the guy to get off the phone. Then, "Hello Celia " Then I said there was an angry homeless person downstairs in the lobby, day five, the publishing begins", and not only that but when I used the bathroom I was listening to music and began dancing. He gave me a phone number of someone at DOT about the construction of sidewalk assholey issues. Also told me the sprinklers were from a BP building. I said, "Those oil bastards." 

The post about the sidewalk construction issues is coming and many other things such as why I am severely sleep deprived today and have essentially been that way for months. There is no sleeping in hell, especially if you are female. 



Homeless In Anchorage Alaska Part 1: The Bus to Hell/Brother Francis Shelter Bus Stops

This sign in the picture above is on the fence at the bus stop about one block from Brother Francis Shelter, the arriving stop. The owner of the property there for a long time collected empty booze bottles and attached them to the fence at the bus stop. Recently they were all removed. Now we have two signs instead. I have no idea who wrote this, but the property owner is one of the candidates. I will often refer to the #45 bus as the bus to hell and on Sundays when the buses don't run very late I'll say, "All aboard the last bus to hell", but it was not me who wrote this. The bus to hell is often packed with people like a sardine can, but they recently added some new runs which has helped. The bus is still packed at certain times. There can be intoxicants causing problems and then there are all of us homeless people with our stuff, backpacks, suitcases, garbage bags, other kinds of bags and containers. This is especially true of people who have disabilities and are unable to participate in the 'Inhouse' program at Brother Francis Shelter which would allow a locker, leaving stuff in storage, getting to sleep in the dorm instead of a mat on the floor (but the women's dorm has a bedbug problem, so no thanks) and more time at the shelter during the day. For some of us  a good part of the reason we are not participating is due to bullying, retaliation and massive dysfunction. It is also true for those who were targeted by the serial bullies and/or are unable to get what they need from the "case managers', which is a large percentage of the "clients."

Bus stop to Hell.
Above is the bus stop with the plywood attached to the fence. This sign below is also on the fence which is why I think the property owner may have written the hell message. He has valid complaints, but his ideas for the solution I disagree with. They now have people picking up garbage around the properties close to the shelter, so its cleaner than when I first arrived.

The first bus out of hell in the morning week days runs around 6:20 AM, on the weekends it is much later because there is a very limited bus schedule so I end up dragging my suitcase downtown while wearing a heavy backpack. The wheels on those suitcases last about three weeks if dragged around a lot which is why I started taking buses more.

I stood at the bus stop in front of the shelter for months breathing second hand smoke, listening to fighting and having people ask me for things, water, cigarettes, money etc. There is also lots of crazy stuff going on and then close by people sleeping on the ground. There are people gathered at the bus stop for some unknown reason who are not waiting to ride. The behavior of some make that stop a miserable place. It is also filthy due to vomit, spitting, stuff spilled all over. Apparently steam cleaners are rare in Alaska, who knew? Just recently they found out about them at the downtown bus transit. It's gross and was a lot worse due to garbage, but they are doing a much better job of picking that up.

I decided to walk down past Bean's Cafe and try that stop. There was just me and a nice Native guy there for a while, now another Native guy is there sometimes. There are people sleeping on the ground on the way to the stop and they often say a pleasant hello. A nice lady, a Native elder yesterday morning told me I looked beautiful as I walked to the bus stop. I don't look beautiful, but it was so nice to have someone say something so sweet to me after spending the night in hell. It was 1000 times better than "Do you have $5, I'm really hung over."

The crappy picture above is towards the bus stop in front of Brother Francis Shelter. I could never find a time when there were not people there so I could get a picture. It has been cleaned up some, when I first got to the shelter in March and for quite some time afterwards it was really nasty. 

These are Chechs pulling a prank, but that is what route 45, the bus to hell feels like sometimes.  

I have ME/cfs and Hashimotos along with other issues, but those two are massively fatiguing and it is actually (as I have found out the hard way over a long period of time) dangerous to expose oneself to doctors in this state with these diagnoses. The problem with the packed bus and having to bring your stuff everywhere you go besides it just being exhausting and making everything very difficult, even walking, is having to find a spot on the bus it will fit. If the bus has a low number of people, no problem, but the 45 is often packed. Even if you find a spot you may have a filthy, drunk person with a very dirty backpack sit next to you with their stuff against yours or your body. I have many times been on a bus with three women who have suitcases (including me) with people standing in the isle. One time it was like that in the evening on the bus to hell and the bus driver let four very intoxicated people who were swaying all over with huge backpacks on the bus. Another time at the bus stop to hell there were people waiting at the stop and they began boarding the bus as I was getting off with my suitcase. I was close to the front and there were people standing all along the aisle to the back door. The front was the only exit I could use. The female bus driver yells for them to wait to get on the bus, "I had no idea someone with a suitcase, WOULD go out the front door." What bus are you on Ms. Bus Driver? Yes that wasn't the name I was thinking at the time. There are some wonderful bus drivers and then there are some asshats. I actually got off a bus today to get away from one.

A couple days ago I got on the bus in the morning and then it stops at BFS. There are often walkers, wheel chairs and then all of us people with our crap. Everyone has a right to ride the bus and of course, this is what we want. There are sideways seats in the front and they are designed to go up for W/Cs etc. It works out well to sit there with suitcases and strollers. The area is used by everyone, but disabled and seniors are supposed to be allowed to have the area if they show up. I am on disability, but mobility issues are the first concern. I met a tourist from France who was very impressed that W/Cs went on the buses, "Not poss-e-bull in France."

My constant companions.
The bus stopped at BFS and I did not see the W/C until it started to come on the bus. I got up to let them have room and to keep the wheels etc. from rubbing on my suitcase. The W/C was on one side and the bus driver got in the isle so I could not move. The wheels of everything that goes through the property of BFS go through puke, spit and who knows what all, that includes our rolling suitcases. The wheels of the W/C rubbed into my suitcase and against my legs. What the bus driver should have done when he got up was asked me to move until they were situated which is what I would normally do if whatever cart or W/C is really wide. I now go to the back of the bus and stood by the door for two days, then this morning sat in the back.

One morning when I got on the bus I just headed to the back of the bus and nice people tried to get me to sit in the front saying there was room. I told them it would not work as there was going to be a wheel chair at the next stop. There was a W/C and lots of people with stuff. That stop takes a long time due to people with issues who are very slow to even put money in the machine and people with all their stuff. I always think the bus driver must be very happy on Wednesday because seniors ride for free and just get on. Before I got halfway to the back with a heavy backpack on and trying to move a suitcase down a narrow isle the bus driver started rolling the bus and I almost fell, this actually happens daily on different buses. When I got to the back and grabbed the pole I said, "Thank you so much Mr. Asshole bus driver, wish I could walk, but no I have to take a fucking suitcase with me everywhere I go."

I did complain to People Mover including the filthy bus seats and some of the crazy that goes on. The
next day the floor of the bus had been cleaned. I also explained how we have no choice, but bring suitcases on the bus due to how homeless people in Anchorage are treated by Catholic Social Services and the city of Anchorage. Of course we are the least happy about it of anyone. We are trapped.

From the bus stop on the other side of Bean's Cafe I use.