Aug 24, 2010

Aug 24, 2009

Des Moines's southside is not handicap accessible

I just moved into housing that has disabled & elderly people, the problem is the hazardous city bus stops for those who live where I do. There is no real sidewalks on Fleur Drive,plenty of traffic lights the disabled cannot use. There is plenty of traffic faster then a wheel chair or walker. Wattrous Ave. is the same only without traffic lights and no handicap accessible sidewalks, there is none and no where to load a wheel chair except on the street. The run around I get is the city bus company says it is the city and the city says it is the bus company who needs to handle this. I have three numbers I can call to file complaints and have the city audited to see if any money was given them to add sidewalks. I see in the paper that certain roads are being fixed. Why not fix the non existant sidewalks on Fleur & Wattrous Ave ???????
As far as loading the wheel chair goes, I am a paying customer who happens to be in a wheel chair. I get loaded out in the street,it is like taking my life in my own hands because of the bus company's record of hitting people. There were 7 serious accidents pedestrian vs. city bus this past 2 years.
I am an A.C.L.U. member and an N.A.A.C.P. supporter,I can and will be calling the Federal Access Board and H.U.D. and the U.S. Dept of Justice due to all these agencies ability to file a complaint and investigation. I know I am boning up on what I need to know before I get the online classes to get a degree.
I am not just speaking up for myself,I am speaking up for all the disabled & elderly where I live .

Jun 24, 2009

Iowa has done it again when it comes to housing the ill & elderly females

I saw in the paper the other day another female who is elderly and uses a motorized wheel chair isn't being helped.I am disabled and in a motorized wheel chair and at this point sick.The elderly woman is living in a storage unit with the Iowa's blessing.Instead of helping her get in an assisted living unit or disabled housing the head of Iowa's Dept.of Human Services has his head in the sand. My son who is an adult has seen first hand how women are treated in Iowa.Whether trying to get in an office in the State House or those who are ill.My son says it is a shame Iowa has gone to the dogs.The woman is staying in the storage unit like the one I rented for my belongings until I need to move them one more time.I obviously am not a woman with problems making decisions like the head of the Iowa Dept of Human Services likes to imply as an excuse to not help the woman in the storage unit or any woman in the same shoes. Are you the next woman the Dept.of Human Services refuses to help ? There are alot of people who are going to be out on the streets due to foreclosure.I predict some of them will be in the need of services, assisted living,a home health care nurse or disabled housing,will there be enough to go around ? People who are 30 to 55 have no place to get help,Iowa has this attitude that people that age do not have serious health issues. Does Iowa need an attitude adjustment after someone speaks up or goes online ?
As for housing,the Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency needs to look into Melvin Canfields dealings with them over the property he rents out to their clients.His property is substandard to say the least,it rains inside due to bad pipes.He prefers to rent to druggies & drunks.I guess it is because he has a reason,when he kicks them out he gets to keep the deposit,right ?Someone like myself who paid him 5 1/2 years on time or early and didn't bring in his kind of people.Those like me are the wrong kind of renters.He used to rib me about hob knobbing with the snobs because I went tp State House functions and have memberships to some well known groups.We can say the A.C.L.U. and the N.A.A.C.P. and more.Now we know why Mel said what he did !!!

Jun 5, 2009

Nowhere for motorized wheelchairs

The city of Des Moines has no place for those of us who need a place to stay.There is no one who helps those of us who are 30 to 55 yrs. of age.I have been calling the past 8 weeks to get into disabled housing or assisted living.There was no place open,there was a 3 month to a 6 month waiting period.Who knows when their health is going to finish bottoming out ? I'd say no one knows when this will happen,even if some without health issues think they can tell. Walk a mile in a disabled persons shoes before you decide how things happen.
The city of Des Moines can seem to find money on a publication tooting their own horn and lay off people who perform city services.There is the Gateway Park art display if you can ,they found money for that.Yet,they cannot help the disabled who have been displaced find accessible housing.Let alone get more built so there is a place.
I have told City Hall if they cannot put something in I would start a web site for the three adult households.It would be cheaper rent and household bills.When I first mentioned this the reaction was don't do that by some city officials.The officers would have to learn how to deal with this. I know alot of officers and I am sure they won't have a problem with this.

May 21, 2009

May 14, 2009

Curtesy of the City Council

If you've been wondering where I've been,my health has been doing what it always does.I am battling several serious health problems that require several surgeries.
I have had to look at disabled housing or assisted living due to my health as usual.There are no units that do not have a waiting list.A person never knows when their health is going to get to the point they have to move to disabled housing fast.Waiting lists are ok for those who do not have health concerns & surgeries to get set up and put in there a heart attack and a motorized wheelchair.Trying to juggle several surgeons & doctors and two new doctors and look for housing in this situation is not good.I've called several places to see about housing to no avail and no place to get moved.My health has been bad since I was 25 years old,alot of people think this only happens when you are older and it doesn't.I have heard that there are homeless soldiers who are in a similar situation.It is all curtesy of the City Council and their beloved lofts & condos that no one can afford without bringing three adult households like I suggested before.I have been told by several at city hall they do not like the idea.I know it can work because it works for people in my situation but it would have to be set up a little different.Three adult households put some of your money back in your pocket,sharing the main household bills is why.If you divide the rent & electricity and etc. by three,the expense is cheaper. You just might end up in a nicer place,too.
I am a supporter of the officers here and alot of them know it.When I went to court for a legal name change - family change I tried to educate the officers I was around.
Most of them knew about the legal name change part but not the family change part or what happened in court or why. A few knew why as they know the former biological family and why I wanted out the legal way.I handled the court hearing and saved alot of money.
I know I am luckier then most around here as I went from having nothing but the kids,to making it as far as getting the audio & video studio and knowing how to use the equipment I have on my own.I took a preliminary college test last october and I am close to a law degree,self-taught.I got the results three days after I found out my total spine crashed.I was in a long term relationship with one of the best private investigator in Des Moines 11 1/2 years.He taught me what I know how to do when he was too busy to do it.I still have the souvineers of those years.He helped raise my son and the funny or eerie thing was they looked like father & son.My son has a clean record to this day. I think it is because of my life back then and who I let around my house and kids.

Jan 21, 2009

A room of ones own - Homeless in Des Moines& near homeless

City Council seems to think their secret is how critical the housing situation really is,and it never happens in their city. What do you do when you cannot afford the rent in your community or a mortgage payment during a high rate of foreclosure ? What if a charity group came in and offered huts/hooches and you did not know about building permits ? What if that charity group had the right idea but was not aware of how the Housers (mentioned on this web site) put the first ones in.Yes,it happens in Des Moines Iowa and has been this way a long time. Go to the Village Voice and go to the news section and put in the search,Homelessnessness and look for House Rules,it gives you the history of the huts / hooches.As I mentioned Vince Aletti sometimes writes for the Village Voice,I have the same last name as most of you know.He is listed under arts if you are interested.Are tents at a camp site safer then the huts/hoochs,in the Iowa winter the answer is no.What gives the City Council & Mayor the priviledge of telling residents how to handle their situation ? I believe there are alot of adults they think they have control of.However,I am disabled and I am an A.C.L.U. member and an NAACP card carrying supporter and card carrying member of Poeple for the American Way and I am an independent female.Mark Godwin,city legal does not like these facts,we have discussed this along time ago.I believe it was after I called the General Accounting Office in Wash,DC,or the top dogs.I called there to ask if I could have the Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency books audited. I have a federal phone book thanks to a friend in Wash DC.How much can I do around here ?

Jan 17, 2009

Jan 11, 2009

Questionable conduct ?????

It is no wonder the homeless & near homeless has been a part of Des Moines a long time. It did not just start yesterday,folks and you could be the next one on the streets or at a shelter to keep from freezing to death on the streets.
The City of Des Moines has been talking about cuts in service, they gave a list of those who need to expect to be laid off.It seems like they may try to make cuts at the Police Dept. and fire Dept. as well.What do I know ? There was the $3 million to renovate the Vets Auditorium - City Council does not seem to realize people live on the streets here.
I know there are people with disabilities,physical like mine and other disabilities on the street.I am lucky,I have family who set up my audio & video Studio so I have a handicap accessible place to be during the day.It is so I can get to my doctors & surgeons offices.Those who do not know me I've spent alot of my life in and out of surgery.I am still in and out,I had surgery Nov.13 and expect to be back in surgery in a couple of weeks again.It isn't over by a long shot to get me back in one piece.I know how hard it is to be disabled and have shoddy transportation,It is even worse for those on the streets with disabilities.
One more thing, I just saw alot of the City Council's favored lofts and condos on the local foreclosure list. Maybe some of those people need a hobby that could pay some of the bills or maybe it is too late for those condo & lofts owners.They got in over their heads.Three adult households might be able to make it here. I know mine is doing great,we had a 13 year anniversary since court made us a three adult family.

Jan 3, 2009

It's the New Year and the homeless huts are gone - What's next ?

The residents of Des Moines deserves a better city council then we have. City Council doesn't seem to have the decency to do what is right.The homeless huts are gone and due to that move a homeless,elderly man nearly froze to death after having to return to a tent.Why should anyone care ? It could be you out there next,a medical emergency or a chronic,serious medical problem could put you out of housing.Then there is the mortgage crisis,a foreclosure could put you on the streets.
When you have a city council who have the me - first or big businesses - first attitudes that has gotten out of hand recently,we have problems.It's a matter of time someone like me gives them a taste of their own medicine.However,Des Moines does have some residents who are foolish enough to believe that if they say something it won't matter or help. Every little bit of help the residents can do, helps.
It's winter and there's homeless and near homeless,some are elderly and disabled.When you add the mortgage crisis there are more people out in the cold,there is nothing certain about the miseries except it is out of control.
The mornings are freezing and some days too but we need to stop and think about the freezing nights and who is out there.

Dec 28, 2008

The homeless huts did not start in Des Moines Iowa

The City Council of Des Moines Iowa recently ordered the huts or hooches that the H.O.P.E. builders put up for the homeless torn down.The idea was not started in Des Moines Iowa,it was started by the Georgia Tech architecture grad students.The Mad Housers was founded in 1987 by the Georgia Tech students.The grad students realized homelessness was a problem in Atlanta Georgia.They decided with simple inexpensive materials they could design and build,safer shelters for the homeless then tents. Those who put the huts in were called housers.The housers used a safer way to heat the huts.They used car engine generators.I do suppose someone had to recharge the generators at their home to keep the heat going.The City Council has no reason to be heartless by putting the homeless out in the cold at Christmas.Check out my source, the Village Voice, article "House Rules",search under homelessness.I do read the Village Voice because Vince Aletti's articles are in there and he is also in the New Yorker magazine at times.
I hope I did not burst anyone's bubble with my news flash ...................
HAPPY NEW YEARS,EVERYONE !

Dec 26, 2008

The City of Des Moines treats homelessness as a crime

As my blog says I am an A.C.L.U. member and I have an NAACP supporter card. Both the A.C.L.U.and I know being homeless is not a crime.The City Officials recently have been violating the Civil Rights and Human Rights of the homeless and poor.The City Officials pick and choose who to put out of housing.I have yet to see the city officials go to a persons house,see faulty heating units ,then tell them they have to get out.Recently the city officials,in the dead middle of winter, said the huts a charity built to keep the homeless warm,had to be torn down.The city officials
gave the homeless men seven days to evacuate the makeshift huts.They were built to get them out of the unheated tents.One elderly man is in serious condition due to the city's actions.He almost froze to death in an unheated tent,another homeless person went to check on him and found a serious situation.The wind chill was 25 to 35 below zero,it is an Iowa winter.The city officials are trying for the first person to freeze to death in Des Moines this year.They are the contributing factor if this does happen
It is inhumane to force people out in the cold because they are homeless or near homeless or on a limited income or disabled like myself.There is no reason on earth
to be this cruel.I agree with several people an attorney should take this case pro bono.It would get his name out there and maybe build a good reputation if he wins.
I am watching to see who is a Grinch and who is naughty and who is nice,maybe I can report to Santa next year! I'm trying to keep a good sense of humor especially this time of the year.

Dec 22, 2008

We need to confront the housing situation in Des Moines

The housing situation or lack thereof low to moderate income housing and the city officials being proud of destroying the huts put in for the homeless by H.O.P.E. a charity group.The hut issue can be seen on youtube,look for the homeless in Des Moines.I heard there is a homeless man who is in serious condition from exposure to the cold,12-22-08 on the news.It happened after the city officials tore down the make shift huts or hooches as they were called.Is the City Council waiting for a homeless or near homeless person to die,if not the man in the hospital ? City Council tore down the huts right in the middle of winter,well those people are still out in the cold.
One question remains," Why are these people being put out in the cold this holiday season ?" City Council has known about the housing problem yet they wear blinders and will probably do so about the foreclosure rate. The newly aren't used to being on the street and don't know where to go for help.It is singles and families and disabled and elderly alike.

I guess on another note : People clear your walks so people can get around.Wheel chairs need 18 to 20 inch paths and the crosswalks cleared.NOTE: If you see a wheel chair in the road when you are driving don't call the officers - report the property owner for not having the sidewalks cleared and probably the sidewalk not handicap accessible. Today when I was out in my wheel chair the cross walk at 15th and grand was not cleared where it is handicap accessible,I was in no mood to pop wheelies off a 4 inch curb people ! I am disabled yet I can clear the doorway in front of my audio & video Studio, why can't you ?

Dec 17, 2008

I try to be upfront about the homeless situation ....

Several people seem to think they can shove the homeless and near homeless problems under a rug somewhere so no one notices. It is like a child playing peek a boo, it's there and then it's hidden.It does not work that way, when the homeless and near homeless are pushed out of one place they have to go to another place. The near homeless take their beds with them to the next relative or friends home and next floor. As I've said before Des Moines is turning into a ramein noodle soup and air bed kind of community.Some at city hall seem to think they can brush me off like they do the homeless and near homeless but I don't brush off that easily.Also,I have a thick skin after all these years,it takes alot to rattle me.
Sorry, good samarititans do not seem welcome here in Des Moines.There are people at city hallwho see the problem of homelessness that keeps getting worse and do nothing.Then we have the good samaritans who try to help with what they have to work with.City Council would rather see a homeless person live in a tent and possibly freeze then have them in a structure with four walls.City Council works real hard to undo what the good samaritans try to do for the community to prove their kind of point.Unfortunately this time they waited until the dead middle of winter,another reason for the Scrooge list.It is cruel and unusual punishment on a population that is growing due to job loss and forclosures and other reasons.Rent in Des Moines is rediculous,it takes three people paying general household bills to rent a decent place.I did offer to bring families like mine here and teach some of the people here how a three adult family does things. I have the general family agreement papers that we use when three people live together.One person at City Hall commented he did not like the idea.Well,I don't like them treating people wrong and making it where a low income person cannot afford the rent, a basic need.

Dec 15, 2008

Shelters did not take the place of permanent housing

It is December 15th and below zero temperatures,"why is it people wait to decide to put those in tents out in the middle of winter ?".More homeless are being asked to leave where they set up their home months or longer.We need a Scrooge List : starting with the city hall and those at the railroad property.Where are these people supposed to go ? Des Moines Iowa has a growing population of homelessness and near homeless.All of the evicting started about two weeks ago and in the dead middle of winter.It is not just the alcoholics and drug users in this situation, we have kids and teens and families and disabled and elderly out in the cold.Shelters put the ones staying there out on the streets during the day.We have businesses who have them trespassed from their property and the skywalks.These people are out in the cold again.There are some people at city hall who have no morals or ethics,I could name names but this isn't hard to figure out is it ? Shelters are not the answer as they did not take the place of permanent housing.Diseases and the recent bed bug problem that was shared between the shelters go to show you shelters are a problem.City Hall uses the "It isn't safe " statement to put the homeless out of their camp.Well,shelters aren't safe either.
Please,remember I am an A.C.L.U. member since 2002.I'm now a card holder from the NAACP, thank you.I can be reached at p.o.box 7214,Des Moines Iowa 50309. Larissa

Dec 14, 2008

The Des Moines Homeless on youtube

Recently the homeless problem has gotten worse and landed on youtube.Alot of people had a field day with city hall.The forclosure rate is getting worse, recently I helped a man who was newly homeless.He had no idea on how to live on the streets or who to ask for help.I sent him in the right direction.If you search for Homelessness in Des Moines on youtube you can see what really goes on around here.
On another note, I just received my A.C.L.U. membership card and my first NAACP card.One of the city legal lawyers does not like people who have these cards like I do. He also doesn't like the fact I know alot about the law,win cases without a law degree and have done it right as I've never been sued.These cards open doors other people have trouble with.I took a preliminary college test to see where I would fit in classes.I am 63 college credit hours from a law degree or law enforcement degree.Law enforcement,maybe not,I am wheel chair bound and it looks like a permanent fixture.Speaking of officers December12 as usual I took the christmas cards to the police department for the officers.I also sent a thank you card to the staff in the Police Chief's office as they get the cards out.I've done this for years as the officers do s great job of keeping the community safe.
I am disabled and just went through surgery again and I'm expecting more.I am looking for a computer to take classes online.I can use the recouperation time frame to study in a relaxed environment.I spent most of my adult life in and out of the hospital and raising other peoples kids.As of recent my health is to the point where I am in a motorized wheelchair.I need a van to transport it and me and I can't afford one.I do have a designated licensed driver.I'm also at the point where I need to look at finding a house suitable for my health and within my budget.It could be a foreclosed on home with a set amount of payment or a rent to own house.I've been in my current situation 5 years.Do they have rent to own houses anymore?It would help with the housing situations,the homeless or near homeless and those losing their houses due to crooked lenders and real estate dealers.I was asked the other day if I gave up my audio & video studio since I am down with my health.I told her no and that I still go out to get housing videos of bad housing for the poor here that is substandard.The inspectors are on my video tapes of the situation.They do drive by inspections and probably get paid under the table for their effort to approve bad housing units.

Apr 23, 2007

My public announcement on housing

I have a public announcement on the housing situation in Des Moines, the test run is already on video tape and DVD.The props are an air bed and ramein noodle soup and etc.
Contents :
In the 1950's it took one income to pay the bills.In the 1980's it took roughly two incomes to pay the bills.It is 2007 and it takes a full time job and a part time job to pay the bills or three adults in a household.Rent in Des Moines costs more then the average person can afford.What happens when you look at the low wage earners, the elderly and the disabled and single parent homes ? Des Moines is turning into an " Air bed and Ramein noodle soup " kind of community.
The homeless are always talked about but nothing much is done to help them. A few have died on the streets here. We've had several die in fires due to paying too high of rent and not having money for utilities. Then we have the near homeless who bounce between family and friends homes to stay off the streets.Their beds go with them as air beds are easy to move.
There have been alot of people here who have told me time and time again they cut the cost of groceries by buying ramein noodle soups and mashed potato flakes, peanut butter and cereals. It's cheap and not exactly healthy.
Des Moines is a city where lofts and condo's are being built. A lot of the residents in Des Noines will never see the inside of the lofts and condos , let alone rent them.The low income and elderly and disabled have very few choices as to where they can rent.They live in substandard housing or in the homeless shelter the city officials seem to have taken the place of low to moderate income permanant housing.
What about the job situation here ? We have corporate welfare, these companies bring in alot of low wage jobs with little to no health care and they collect city money. When you add all this up, it doesn't look good. How many people will end up living on the streets before someone does something ?
At the last housing voucher give away there was a fight in the line, even when they were told it could take a year before they are helped. The next time you see someone's Grandmother sleeping in a city of Des Moines bus shelter,you know why.
The city officials of Des Moines Iowa need cited for illegal dumping of human beings.

Mar 10, 2007

Housing Inc : Des Moines Ia.

My name is Larissa, I own an audio & video studio. I am currently working on my housing video project on the city of Des Moines Iowa.
I should give you some information on how the studio came to be. In 2003 & 2004 I was referred to grants to help start the studio, by the then Governor Tom Vilsack. I do believe I still have those referrals in a file. When I went to those agencies I kept getting the run around or told we don't know where the money is. The citizens of Des Moines eventually found out the money landed in certain officials pockets. I am one of the lucky few, my family stepped in to make sure I had the equipment needed to get my housing video project off the ground. I will eventually put my video tape footage off onto a dvd and online at a later date.
If you are naive about the housing situation in Des Moines I encourage you to check out a few open records : Des Moines Police Dept. cases : 2000: 36946 & 36947 & 36948 & 36949. It is how you find out the skinny on the Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency protecting a sex offender on their payroll and how certain city officials tried to lamely cover up what was going on. The funny thing is the housing agency knew they had a problem in 1998, I caught the problem in 1999. It was claimed to be in my imagination, well I either have a great imagination or som eone at the housing agency and city hall has the Pinnocchio syndrome. I caught some of the issues on video tape dated 9 months before an arrest was made, some imagination, right ?
As for my qualifications, I graduated with a P.H.D. from the school of hard knocks. Really, I learned what I know about investigating from one of the best P.I.'s in this area. We were together 11 1/2 years, he taught me how to do his job in case he was too busy to go to the court house or any other office for records. I am self taught as far as video taping goes, I can take video tape and put it onto a dvd at my studio. The audio part is more fun then work, karaoke
anyone ?

Introduction

My name is Larissa, I own an audio & video studio. I am currently working on my housing video project on the city of Des Moines Iowa.
I should give you some information on how the studio came to be. In 2003 & 2004 I was referred to grants to help start the studio, by the then Governor Tom Vilsack. I do believe I still have those referrals in a file. When I went to those agencies I kept getting the run around or told we don't know where the money is. The citizens of Des Moines eventually found out the money landed in certain officials pockets. I am one of the lucky few, my family stepped in to make sure I had the equipment needed to get my housing video project off the ground. I will eventually put my video tape footage off onto a dvd and online at a later date.
If you are naive about the housing situation in Des Moines I encourage you to check out a few open records : Des Moines Police Dept. cases : 2000: 36946 & 36947 & 36948 & 36949. It is how you find out the skinny on the Des Moines Municipal Housing Agency protecting a sex offender on their payroll and how certain city officials tried to lamely cover up what was going on. The funny thing is the housing agency knew they had a problem in 1998, I caught the problem in 1999. It was claimed to be in my imagination, well I either have a great imagination or som eone at the housing agency and city hall has the Pinnocchio syndrome. I caught some of the issues on video tape dated 9 months before an arrest was made, some imagination, right ?
As for my qualifications, I graduated with a P.H.D. from the school of hard knocks. Really, I learned what I know about investigating from one of the best P.I.'s in this area. We were together 11 1/2 years, he taught me how to do his job in case he was too busy to go to the court house or any other office for records. I am self taught as far as video taping goes, I can take video tape and put it onto a dvd at my studio. The audio part is more fun then work, karaoke
anyone ?