By Brittany Hanson/Garden Grove Journal
Impassioned members of the Stanton public spoke up in protest of a proposed homeless transition residential center at the Tuesday night city council meeting.
“I am opposed totally to the new homeless center going in Stanton. If these people have to live somewhere, let them live somewhere, but not in Stanton,” said Don Anderson.
The center, which was first introduced as an idea for the city at a summertime study session, would be created by the Illumination Foundation. The foundation has built other centers and residential units for transitioning families, the latter of which was what was proposed for Stanton.
The location proposed is 12282 Beach Blvd.
The city council voted four to one in favor of looking into a transitional residential unit at the Aug. 16 meeting.
Dr. Robert Covert , a Stanton resident, said, “The first thing I want to say is being homeless is not a crime. It is a situation that but for the grace of God it could be my family. We need to know exactly what you’re planning to put there before we make a decision.
“I think that we have to realize, that these people they have a problem. I grant you that some have problems that have put them on the street, but we need to understand both sides of the issue.”
Resident Julie Mierhoffer said that although she was not totally opposed to the idea of a shelter or center, that she did not believe it would be appropriate to build it in such a residential district, where it could potentially impact housing values and residential.
One resident, Mike Wilkinson, the president of the Smoketree Homeowners Association, told a story of a homeless woman who had taken up living on the steps of the clubhouse.
The homeowners, according to Wilkinson, allowed her to stay there, however requested that she keep the area clean. Wilkinson said that she did so for all of a day and then trash and eventually human waste began to collect.
Wilkinson asked that the city reconsider the location of the center and to place it somewhere else in the city.
The city council had no response for the speakers, as the item being discussed was not on the agenda for the evening.