Category Archives: Homelessness

Activating a space to discourage camping

September 4, 2017 In a recent public meeting on a homeless encampment in the Ballard, Seattle’s Director of Homelessness George Scarola told neighbors of the camp that they could “activate” public spaces to keep homeless people from camping there. According … Continue reading

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The Testament of Christian Otto

June 24, 2017 Two months ago, I was contacted by a homeless man named Chris Otto. Mr. Otto claimed he had been in a position of authority at two homeless programs run by SHARE (the Seattle Housing and Resource Effort) … Continue reading

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Ghostwriter

June 5, 2017 What would you think if you discovered automobile executives had written a bill on auto safety and handed it to your senator to sponsor? And what if you learned those same executives had penned pro-industry letters to the … Continue reading

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Speaking Truth to Power

June 1, 2017 Here’s a video excerpt of a brave Seattle woman confronting the City Council with my “Anatomy of a Swindle” blog article. This took place on October 14, 2016. The context is a discussion about Mike O’Brien’s proposed … Continue reading

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Puff Piece

April 29, 2017 In my years of trying to bring the Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) to justice, I have been repeatedly frustrated by their slick public relations operation. Here’s an organization that engages in a number of deceptive or dishonest … Continue reading

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Call Me Reverend

April 11, 2017 Call Me Reverend: The Bill Kirlin-Hackett Story Mr. Mild The first impression one gets of the Reverend Bill Kirlin-Hackett is of someone we’d expect to find singing kum-ba-ya around the campfire or handing out coffee and hugs at a … Continue reading

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The Margin Dwellers

April 4, 2017 A word of advice to aspiring reporters: Don’t ever volunteer for the poverty beat. It’ll tear the heart out of you. Meet Jennifer Allison (on the left). She’s the manager at the Georgian Motel on Aurora Ave N. … Continue reading

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Encampment Complaints: A suspicious pattern

March 23, 2017 The document in the link below was produced by Seattle’s Customer Service Bureau (CSB) in response to a public disclosure request from Safe Seattle. The document shows how many citizen complaints the City got in a six-week … Continue reading

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Hello this is my daughter…

March 6, 2017 Seen in a Portland shop window in August 2017. It may have been there for some time, given the reference to winter clothes: HOMELESS IN DWNTWN PORTLAND Please help my ill daughter Hello this is my daughter … Continue reading

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Anything helps. Or does it?

February 20, 2017 This snapshot of a Seattle panhandler was sent to me by a reader who inferred that because the woman was sitting in a comfortable chair sipping a pricey coffee, with a dog and a cushion, she’s not … Continue reading

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ACLU vs. the People

*** TBQ Readers, your help is needed. Please read to the end to find out how you can help make us all safer. *** We were cautiously optimistic when we learned that the Mayor was moving ahead to clear dangerous … Continue reading

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Tent Cities: Not a way out but a way to HANG out

February 8, 2017 Except for the misleading headline, this article from Pacific Standard Magazine is a more or less honest view of a SHARE-run tent city. Based on my own experiences, I can say that the interview subjects are a … Continue reading

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Ballard Bridge Status: 1/10/2017

The Ballard Bridge spans Salmon Bay to connect Seattle’s historic Ballard neighborhood with points south. The bridge and surrounding environs have been a long-term site of homeless camps at both ends. These camps, particularly the one on the north end, … Continue reading

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The Hidden Persuaders

Dedicated to Larry Kaminsky December 27, 2016 Even as Seattle voters enact a flurry of laws designed to “get money out of politics,” the insinuation of paid political advocates into local government continues apace. This article looks at how that works … Continue reading

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Seattle Burnin’ Down

December 11, 2016 Last month I began collaborating with Harley Lever on his Safe Seattle Facebook page. The Blog Quixotic and Safe Seattle share many concerns about public safety, but Safe Seattle has a much wider audience and is more of … Continue reading

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Audit This! ~ Bringing Seattle’s Human Services Department to heel

December 7, 2016 The Seattle Human Services Department (HSD) dispenses city, state, and federal money to a hundred-odd contractors that provide various services to Seattle’s poor and homeless. HSD has regulations requiring the contractors to track and submit financial tracking … Continue reading

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Sex, Lies, and the Seattle City Council

November 21, 2016 The presence of transient sex offenders in Seattle points up why the city’s current approach to illegal encampments is so dangerous. In 1998, the man pictured below was convicted of sexual assault on a child. (Reference RCW … Continue reading

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Anatomy of a Failure: Why Seattle isn’t solving its homeless crisis

November 18, 2016 Seattle’s disastrous homeless policy has resulted from a combination of three things: -Ideology -Paid advocacy -Lack of accountability

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Homeless Policy Questions for the WA Gubernatorial Candidates

November 3, 2016 Below is a list of ten questions that I and my friend Harley Lever of  Safe Seattle devised for Washington gubernatorial race candidates Bill Bryant and Jay Inslee. The document format is QUESTION followed by ANSWER from … Continue reading

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Seattle Shelter Contracts

October 18, 2016 – The document below is a summary report of Seattle’s homeless shelter and outreach contract payments for 2015. It was sent to me by one of my readers (Thanks, Deena!) who got it from Seattle’s Human Services Department (HSD) … Continue reading

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If you see something, trash something.

October 10, 2016 IRONY ALERT! This ad on a Seattle bus tells people to call in if they see trash dumped on the street or sidewalk. I’ve called the number myself, many times; however, the trash I called in about wasn’t taken … Continue reading

Posted in Complaints, Crime, Homelessness, Photos (Stuff), Squatters, Tent City | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Risky Business: Is Seattle’s Encampment Bill un-Constitutional?

October 7, 2016 A hot mess gets hotter In each of the past several years, ever greater numbers of homeless people have been camping out on publicly owned land in Seattle. Conditions around the encampment areas have steadily deteriorated, and … Continue reading

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Ask the Experts

September 24, 2016 Seattle’s Task Force on Homeless Encampment Clean-up had one of its weekly meeings at City Hall Wednesday. I attended at the invitation of a friend who’s on the task force. It was not encouraging. But it was … Continue reading

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Anatomy of a Swindle: How a Rogue Non-profit Captured the Emerald City

September 13, 2016 The Set-up For four years I’ve been investigating a publicly supported non-profit homeless group in Seattle called SHARE. SHARE runs 14 indoor shelters around Seattle, for which it annually gets several hundred thousand dollars from Seattle’s Human … Continue reading

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Tell the whole story please, Mr. B

September 5, 2016 On August 24, the Seattle Times ran a piece by columnist Daniel Beekman about the struggle between Mayor Murray and the city council over homeless folks collecting in hot spots around the city. In this post, I look at one … Continue reading

Posted in General, Homelessness, Media, Photos (Stuff), Politics, Squatters, Tent City | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why I’m voting ‘no’ on the Housing Levy

July 29, 2016 Seattle Proposition 1 is a tax levy on the August 2016 primary ballot for Seattle voters. The levy would double the total amount currently levied for “affordable housing.” See the King County Voter’s Guide description on this … Continue reading

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Jungle Boogie, continued (and continued?)

June 29, 2016 Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said today that there might not be enough people left in the Jungle to bother with kicking them out. Which is an understandable (if not exactly courageous) stance, given the amount of crap he’s … Continue reading

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Can’t Buy Me Likes

Followers of this blog will recall that I have penned a handful of articles on Seattle’s own Low Income Housing Institute (LIHI) and its director, Sharon Lee. Ms. Lee runs a $50 million taxpayer-funded operation and hobnobs with the Mayor and … Continue reading

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No Strings Attached

June 18, 2016 A recent Facebook post from Seattle Mayor Ed Murray is at once a study in courage and a window onto the political nightmare that is homeless policy in Seattle. Murray is currently getting skewered by the church-lady left … Continue reading

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“Dear Scott . . .” Will SHARE ever fire Boss Morrow? Can they?

June 4, 2016 Today I got a nice surprise in my mailbox. It’s a letter from someone who claims to represent some two dozen Scott Morrow critics: disaffected homeless campers, SHARE insiders, volunteers. The letter is being circulated ahead of … Continue reading

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