Image Credit: Hands on Nashville / Twitter
The Tennessee Conservative [By Jason Vaughn] –
A homeless camp in South Nashville off of Nolensville Road has popped back up after being cleaned up in May. A Nashville business is waiting on the Metro council to approve $50 million dollars of funding to help find a long-term solution to this problem.
Smoke Token Smoke Shop has been troubled for years by the ongoing problem of those camping at this location.
Zach Hall, store manager of the Smoke Token, told Fox 17 News, “I have one lady that apparently fell in the creek and stumbled in completely sopping wet, she was very not altogether, she was walking through the store and tried to bathe in our bathroom. I’ve seen people walk and literally pass out in the parking lot. We had one person O-D over there.”
According to Hall, the situation continues to worsen and it is impacting business.
Hall wants the city to follow through, stating “the biggest thing that we’ve seen that we’ve run into is they like to go through the dumpster, pull out and just kind of trash the area back there. A lot of people in this area don’t feel safe, especially with the apartments right down the road, there are lots of fires that get started.”
“The biggest thing is going to be follow through,” Hall continued. “Should you be helping people, ‘Yes’, but there is also a fine line of how much are you putting into it to allow them to keep doing that because they’re comfortable with the lifestyle.”
“And how much are you trying to actually get them off of any substance abuse problems that they have [and] put them in affordable housing but still have them be responsible for their actions?” he questioned.
Metro’s Homeless Impact Division is sending outreach teams to affected areas and enrolling qualified individuals into the city’s housing pipeline in hopes that the problem can be addressed.
They released the following statement:
“As always, we are committed to addressing homelessness, working with our community partners and creating a successful and effective response to meeting the needs of our unhoused neighbors.
The same steps we take in that area to address homelessness are the same steps we have undertaken across Davidson County. First, our outreach team visits outdoor areas, including this location daily. During this time, we offer support options and ensure they are enrolled in our housing pipeline.
Additionally, we frequently host resource fairs where we bring a host of service providers who offer on-site mental health and substance abuse evaluations and support. We have housing navigators on-site along with agencies offering jobs.
It is our hope, with the proposed $50 million investment in homelessness, that we can increase our outreach team and have access to increased gap housing options for those experiencing homelessness. This will mean a safe place to live for those unhoused who are on the waitlist for permanent housing options.”
About the Author: Jason Vaughn, Media Coordinator for The Tennessee Conservative ~ Jason previously worked for a legacy publishing company based in Crossville, TN in a variety of roles through his career. Most recently, he served as Deputy Director for their flagship publication. Prior, he was a freelance journalist writing articles that appeared in the Herald Citizen, the Crossville Chronicle and The Oracle among others. He graduated from Tennessee Technological University with a Bachelor’s in English-Journalism, with minors in Broadcast Journalism and History. Contact Jason at news@TennesseeConservativeNews.com