Organizers of the Nashville Homeless Power Project had more than a dozen people gather outside the Metro Courthouse Tuesday night to raise awareness about the struggles of homeless Nashvillians.
Demonstrators were arrested at about 2 a.m. Wednesday morning when they refused to leave.
The Power Project is asking Mayor Bill Purcell to provide money to build 200 units for the homeless.
Father Charles Strobel runs Room at the Inn, a homeless shelter, and was among those arrested.
He said, "It was an event we never thought would get to the point of having to...
...be arrested… but it happened and it was a judgment call on their part and I'm very happy the court was able to rule in our favor."
Organizer Carmon Ryals was once homeless herself.
She said, “We built public awareness out of all this and we had an opportunity to lobby our city council people through all this and make them aware of the shortage of low-income units available for the homeless.”
“The root cause of homelessness here in Nashville is the lack of low-income housing and the only way we’re going to change this is to standup and make the public aware of this and the city officials aware of this andmake it a priority,” Ryals continued.
When asked about increasing complaints of panhandling and downtown’s homeless, Ryals said, “That’s a minority of our homeless community. We’ve got families that are homeless, Vanderbilt employees that are homeless, we’ve got 42% of our working homeless,” Ryals said. “They have jobs, they just make minimum wage and there’s no low-income housing for them to move into.”
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