At Least She’s Not Your City Council Member

Colorado Springs City Councillor Helen Collins.

Colorado Springs City Councillor Helen Collins.

Unless you live in Colorado Springs, that is, in which case we're sorry–as the Gazette's Jakob Rogers reports:

Helen Collins has a unique approach to helping homeless people in Colorado Springs: Give them a bus ticket out of town and "make them work."

The Colorado Springs councilwoman spoke up Tuesday against the city's 2014 Action Plan for housing and homeless programs – sparking a brief exchange with councilwoman Jill Gaebler and prompting two audience members to also voice their opinions…

"A lot of the homeless, the best way to get rid of the homeless is to give them a bus ticket back to their families," Collins said. "This isn't even taken into consideration. It's like the taxpayer has to fund the homeless for housing.

"They go into a low-income housing area," Collins continued, referencing her district on the southeast side of Colorado Springs. "They drag it down and then they move on to the next new low-income housing facility.

"I just don't think that's right for the taxpayer."

She added that the best way to help homeless individuals is to "make them work," because she feels federally funded affordable-housing programs enable homeless people to live off taxpayer dollars.

As the Gazette reports, there are charities in Colorado Springs who have funds set aside for helping homeless people with bus tickets in circumstances where that might help them. But as at least some other council members, homeless advocates, and even some actual homeless people in the audience tried to explain, probably while marveling at the callous ignorance on display from this elected official, bus tickets don't really cure homelessness as well as housing does. Job training and help finding a job really help as well. Also, what good is a bus ticket for a homeless person with no family to go to? But it seems this is a question that goes beyond council member Helen Collins' scope.

Which is to care as little as possible about homeless people.

14 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Gray in Mountains says:

    Collins is using what many, many politicians use and what voters often/usually respond to. Linear thinking. It leads us to do the precisely WRONG thing more often than not, even into war.

  2. horseshit GOP front grouphorseshit GOP front group says:

    Jesus would be proud.

  3. davebarnesdavebarnes says:

    Bus tickets to San Diego sound good to me.

  4. Diogenesdemar says:

    Isn't that how they finally got rid of Caldara?

  5. horseshit GOP front grouphorseshit GOP front group says:

    If you work for the C-Springs braintrust, it is fine just to assume:

    1) All homeless people have families

    2) All homeless people are able to work

    Glad to see the high powered thinking is still going on down there.

  6. horseshit GOP front grouphorseshit GOP front group says:

    Very true Miss Jane, very true.

  7. DawnPatrol says:

    The ugly karma these sadistic haters will face will be fearsome. And richly deserved.

  8. JBJK16 says:

    I get it- she's clueless and simpleminded.

    But why should the taxpayers any bigger a bill than they have to?

    If the homeless have a place to go, why not send them?

    • mamajama55mamajama55 says:


      It isn't that homeless necessarily have a place to go. It's "bus ticket therapy". Make the homeless people be somebody else's problem.

      Pretty much what we're doing with all of the immigrant children and families on the southern border tonight. Drop them off at the bus station.

      There is really hardly any housing out there for homeless who are not mentally ill.

      That bastion of liberalism, Utah, has found a way to reduce homelessness by 78%. They give homeless people homes.

      It's so crazy it might just work.

    • BlueCatBlueCat says:

      If they have a place to go? Do you seriously think this is about a program involving connecting homeless people with a nice family member or friend they could reach if only they had the money for a ticket?  It's strictly about making it some other community's problem. 

      I suppose we can all just ship homeless people to each other's communities but that doesn't really solve anything for anyone, does it? How will this genius like it when homeless people from some other town arrive in hers courtesy of the same solution she recommends?

    • Curmudgeon says:

      I remember that passage in the Bible, where Jesus said,

      "Then the king will say to those at his right hand, "Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me, and when I was homeless, you put me in a cart and sent me to the next town so you wouldn't have to look at me."    Matthew 25:34-36 (New Republican Translation)


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