Gale Brewer Wants City to Address Street Homelessness, Particularly at 9 Locations on UWS


Possessions of homeless people left on 95th and Broadway earlier this month. Photo by Oliver.

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer has been getting more involved in the debate over homelessness on the Upper West Side. Hotels are now housing hundreds of people experiencing homelessness, to protect them from Covid-19, and street homelessness has “increased dramatically,” she says.

Last week Brewer sent a letter asking the Department of Homeless Services to send more outreach workers to the Upper West Side to handle the increase. She pinpointed nine spots (below) where she says outreach workers should go.

DHS and its partners like Goddard Riverside often reach out to homeless people to try to convince them to seek shelter instead of staying on the street. By law, people can’t be forced to enter a homeless shelter, and those experiencing homelessness sometimes say they feel safer on the street than in a shelter.

DHS also sometimes orders clean-ups of blocks where homeless people have placed their possessions or made makeshift camps. Often, the homeless people return to the spots after the “clean-up”.


A notice on 72nd Street from DHS about a clean up. Click to enlarge.

Brewer’s entire letter is here. Below is the section on street homelessness:

Lastly, street homelessness on the Upper West Side has now increased dramatically. We often hear that DHS and other homeless outreach organizations are doing all that they can. The increases in drug dealing, street encampments, and public disturbances make clear that more must be done. While there are dozens of conditions that need to be addressed, the following problem areas need immediate attention:

DHS tells us that the agency has been working to help people who are living on the street, a task that can often take time.

“Anytime our outreach teams encounter an individual living unsheltered, we work to engage them and offer services. Anytime the City encounters, learns of, or receives a report about a condition on the street that needs to be addressed, the City addresses it as quickly as possible, with City Agencies responding as appropriate. During that process, whenever DSNY or DOT or another partner Agency addresses a condition, we at DHS and our not-for-profit social service provider partners are on hand, discussing directly with any unsheltered individuals who may be there at the time the range of resources/services available to them, and coordinating with partner Agencies as needed. Through the process, we’re focused on preserving the trust our outreach teams develop with these individuals every day, and building on those relationships, as we acknowledge their humanity and encourage them to come off the streets. Engaging those in need isn’t easy or quick work, nor is accepting services for those who’ve lived unsheltered for some time – it requires persistence, compassion, and trust and we will keep coming back.”

NEWS | 84 comments | permalink
    1. blacklikeu says:

      Nice try, if it is indeed a try, but –
      not much will be done.
      The only thing done is the damage that already has been done.

    2. Cxxxxccccccc says:

      Perhaps Ms. Brewer should have been involved
      In conversations before the actions to turn hotels into shelters was taken.

      If the City were to use the daily rate per room they would
      be able to provide people decent permanent housing. This of course doesn’t address drug or mental health issues.

    3. Tracey Tetro says:

      It’s sounds like the same empty rhetoric we have been hearing for months and months. Bottom line, nothing, absolutely nothing ever gets down Nothing changes except for the continuous influx of homeless people who have substance and alcohol abuse problems.

    4. CityGirl57 says:

      there are two women who sit most recently near the Victoria’s Secret on Broadway. I think they might be sisters and one of them papers to be very pregnant. I have seen them over many seasons now, sometimes knitting , quietly together, sometimes charging phones on the kiosk. I wonder about their lives, have handed a few bills over the years .

      • Balebusta says:

        I know them. I gave them supplies from my clinic. One of them had significant marks on her body, likely bedbugs. I did not interact with the one who appears pregnant, however the woman I did speak to appeared to be quite mentally ill and delusional, speaking about having to leave where they were living because it was poisoned. They were previously camped out on Bdwy and 86th for weeks, with a full setup, a mattress, an area for clothing and shoes; I believe they were forced to move bc of work that ConEd was doing on that corner.

      • Billy Turner says:

        I’ve seen these women for years and they have been pregnant more than once. Wonder where the babies end up???

      • J says:

        She has been pregnant for years . Some other problem.

    5. Lesllie Rupert says:

      There is an encampment under the scaffold on the block where Victoria Secret is located, with two women are living there.
      These women used to be under the scaffold at Artie’s Deli but the work being done there must have chased them to this new location.

      • Bob says:

        They lived down by where Oath Pizza was before that and by Key Foods for a while. The one woman is not pregnant as she has looked like that for 3 years. Its a very sad situation but they have quietly sat on the streets for at least 3 years.

        • HelenD says:

          They’ve been out there for at least 8 years. I tried multiple times to speak to them and the younger one made every effort to communicate with me and the older one would cover her up with blankets and/or coats to ‘hide’ her. I always wondered if the younger one had no choice to come along with the older woman. And before you ask, I did try to get them help, with no results, because obviously they’re still out there.

      • ADB says:

        They lived in front of Arties(now new Stage Deli!) a long time, moving occasionally, then returning. The pregnant one was pregnant last year too. It happened again so fast, I wondered if it was possibly an hysterical pregnancy. I tried to engage with her non-judgmentally last year, and she started screaming at me. Afterwards, I avoided them when possible. So sad Homeless people often help each other. I know the shelters are dangerous and terrifying. How long can they stay anyway? Don’t know what anyone can do.

        • Shucks says:

          You got me excited about Stage Deli, but I guess it’s just signage for the next season of Mrs. Maisel.

    6. CB says:

      It is so sad what DeBlasio, DHS, and the local politicians with no brains have let happen to this great neighborhood. The lack of competence and foresight is astounding. It’s like they want the city to fail. Can anyone who pays rent or owns a place on the UWS honestly say their quality of life has improved in the last 4 or so years?

      It’s funny to me that Gale Brewer all of a sudden cares about this stuff. She was the one responsible for not letting that derelict church on 86th and Amsterdam be torn down. That church building has had a sidewalk shed up for years and years, trash all around it, magnet for sketchy folks, and does nothing for the neighborhood. Think of how nice that intersection would be if a proper building had gone up there, with families to use and shop local businesses.

      Gale Brewer instead got the church saved so that a few rich people in the buildings nearby would save their views over the top of the church.

      She hasn’t fought to make the UWS better for average families in the ways I would have liked to see.

      I am glad to see her step up on homelessness now. But she is part of the reason we ever got to this point.

      If she wants my vote— or my neighbors’— she needs to deal with that church on 86th and the homelessness first. She should also call for the 3 hotel shelters with sex offenders and drug addicts ruining the neighborhood and causing nice families to leave for the suburbs to be closed immediately. Families and children deserve to go back to school without walking in fear and filth.

      Honestly, I am ready to vote for any moderate Republican with a brain for City Council and for Mayor in 2021.

      • FrankP says:

        Actually, the church contributes quite a bit to the neighborhood. Among other things:

        THE CENTER AT WEST PARK
        A COMMUNITY PERFORMING ARTS CENTER
        IN THE HISTORIC
        WEST PARK PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH,
        A NEW YORK CITY LANDMARK
        The Center at West Park presents engaging and boundary-pushing early-career and established artists through our artist residency programs, provide affordable rental space for artists to develop their work, and steward the restoration of our historic home’s landmark exterior.

    7. rj says:

      Please get real you must take these people off the streets . NYC is dangerous. The UWS has become unsafe . Stop with the political lip sevice and do somthing .

    8. MP says:

      it’s unfortunate that they have to live on the streets and can’t find a home / shelter . The homelessness situation is getting really bad on 72 st . The old man parked between broadway and west end now has a group of people and they keep getting bigger . They drink alcohol and makes a mess on the streets. The pandemic has created such deep inequalities. I feel sorry for their situation but i would like them to in a shelter than the street where they have access to toilet and not use the street like a public toilet.

      • Nevets K says:

        The attack on the UWS began with the loss of nearly a thousand parking spots for the construction of electric bike lanes. That was the beginning of the end – though many praised it. It continued with the daily threat now posed to pedestrians by bicycles, electric bikes, and electric scooters, a direct result of “progressive policies.” And it seems to be culminating – though things CAN get worse – with the sudden placement of four homeless shelters.
        By now, even the most blind among us are beginning to see.

      • Lils says:

        The pandemic didn’t “create inequalities.” The inequalities have always been there but now UWsiders have to actually look at them and encounter our complicity.

      • UpperWestSide Dad says:

        I live on 72nd Street between Broadway and West End and these are my two cents. The homeless encampment has certainly gotten worse since the pandemic started and is likely a result of the scaffolding on the block affording the men some small amount of shelter. Is the encampment an eyesore? Yes. Do they make a mess? Yes. Do they get loud? Yes. As I’ve told my kids, we are lucky to have shelter, running water and food and that everyone is not as lucky.

        The problem comes when they are either drunk or high, which can be often and at all hours of the day. When they aren’t drunk or high, they aren’t a bother. Once this happens, they become obnoxious and threatening. One of them was aggressively asking me for money one day and I made no response. When my young daughter made eye-contact, he threatened to kill her. I knew he was drunk and couldn’t do anything, but try explaining that to a young one.

        As I read through all of these message boards, the problem is that people on both sides of the issue really don’t want to have a dialogue about the problems and how we as a community can address them.

    9. Christine Tising says:

      Horribly dangerous for people who live here. The stress added on to people who live here and have enough to deal with is criminal… I am a compassionate person with great humanity and empathy but this has made my life, 24/7, full of added stress. Creepy, dangerous, filthy, UNSAFE FOR WE WHO LIVE HERE. I guess we do count. And I am NOT ANY WHERE NEAR RICH…HORRIFYING WE ARE FORCED TO LIVE LIKE THIS. Fear, added stress, disgust… fear… FEAR….

      • Virginia Kallianes says:

        Wow.
        “24/7 stress, fear, FEAR” and danger?!?
        Do we really live in the same neighborhood? I feel none of that.

        • lynn says:

          I don’t know what your situation is, but my neighbors on 72nd street stayed during the pandemic, and volunteered to help other people get food and necessities. The homeless encampment between B’way and WEA grew to large numbers between March and August, and those men were screaming obscenities, aggressively approaching women, throwing bottles, setting fires, using the sidewalk as their bathroom, openly drinking alcohol and smoking pot, and passing out after shooting up in our doorways.

          They also physically blocked people from going into Joseph’s Pharmacy which was one of the few businesses that stayed open during the pandemic. Living this way 24/7 constitutes extremely high levels of stress.

          Several posters complained about this situation in March and everyone just laughed it off and said, ‘oh that’s just tie-dye-guy…he’s always been here,’ as if that made everything ok. Everyone talks about TDG (and Karl on 79th and the man and the 2 women by VC) like they are pets that got out of someone’s back yard and we on a whole have learned to tolerate them.

          Just because you personally haven’t experienced something does not mean that it’s not happening!

        • Dwight Clark says:

          Agreed, “24/7 stress, fear, FEAR” and danger”???

          Unless you are physically living on the street with them, the round-the-clock anxiety does not seem justified.

          No doubt not the best situation, but surely worse for the people that are actually homeless than for us who have food and a safe place to sleep.

          It is a big problem that will take big efforts to solve. As a country, we are far from doing that.

          • HelenD says:

            Your snide remarks don’t change anything for the rest of us. It took the city 5 DAYS to physically remove the junk from the encampment on 72nd st. and the guys are right back out there in front of the nail salon. Just 10 minutes ago one of them charged at a little girl who couldn’t have been more than 4 years old as she went by on a scooter. This goes on around the clock and people live here and have to listen to this screaming all night, and go out to do errands during the day. How do you explain to YOUR kids why there are people laying unconscious in front of your door and the police won’t come and help him? You can’t tell anyone that we’re not dealing with this 24/7!!!

      • Julian says:

        The Upper West Side is more socioeconomically diverse than you think. My mother was addicted and spent most of the 90s in and out of city hotels near Broadway and also being homeless. My brothers’ dad was also addicted and homeless and died on the same streets slowly. These people live in an underworld that you cannot imagine, and the addiction and mental health struggles they face would break you. There’s nothing dangerous about a person who has nothing. We should all be thankful that life’s fortunes blessed us not to have to go through that. Your mindset is why cops kill innocent people. If you don’t like having to share a neighborhood with the less fortunate, maybe you should look into something in the East 70s, otherwise accept that this neighborhood has elements of all socioeconomic groups, and has since before you were born most likely.

        • Elisa says:

          Julian,

          I applaud, and thank you for your honesty. Your understanding comes from a very real place of understanding, compassion, and gratitude, one that cannot compare to the antiseptic vision of a neighborhood some of our neighbors wish to uphold.
          We must accept that there is suffering in the world, and moving it away from our sightline does not solve the problem, even if it creates some discomfort in our relatively comfortable worlds.
          thanks again, peace.

    10. Pilar Maschi says:

      “A condition on the street” see that’s the problem the shame, the ignorance, lack of empathy & compassion even when humans try to be caring. Languafe matters!!! We are not a condition we wre human beings who deserve a place to call home wether it’s a house or a decent 1 bedroom apt with enough room to be healthy, safe, and sane in. We at least deserve a home. Please find it in yourself to give compassion a chance. We are not society’s ills that need to disappear we are human beings that should’ve had the privileges so many new upper west siders inherited at birth. It is not right. Everyone needs to be safe, everyone needs to be cared for.

    11. Susie q says:

      The picture showing the woman’s bags on 95 and Broadway was from a week or so ago! She started on the side of symphony space…then moved to the median (as in the picture) and is now on 94th an Broadway in the doorway of the prior now empty capital one bank by the liquor store. Tonight, I had to walk around a man sleeping smack in the middle of the sidewalk outside the TD Bank on 94 & Broadway. No shirt on.

      • UWS78 says:

        No shirt on! Oh the humanity. Hope you’re able to mentally bounce back from that.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        reply to Susie Q:

        do you ever wonder how the man sleeping on the sidewalk got there? about what could be done for him?

    12. Sid says:

      Seems to me there’s a larger homeless population under the scaffolding than elsewhere. Perhaps we could convince the powers that be that scaffolding should not stay up for years on end? How about a one-year limit on scaffolding and fines for each day scaffolding remains up after that?

      • UMW says:

        If only construction projects (usually mandated by the city, who is slow to issue permits) went that fast. Ultimately scaffolding is a safety issue.

        • RL says:

          My block – West 92nd street between Col and CPW now has sheds down the whole street – save one or two brownstones on the left side of block – and across the street on big corner building going south. Someone is making money on the ridiculous amount of scaffolding jobs that end up staying up for months and years and only encourage crime and homeless encampments

    13. bonita says:

      we are so grateful for your addressing this horrendous situation in our beloved UWS. could we put up signs on the benches on the broadway median that just like there is no one allowed in the parks after 10, there will be no one allowed to be on the benches. unsupervised property will be removed.

      • CB says:

        Dear Bonita,

        I think this is a good idea. The medians and benches are not overnight hotel rooms. They aren’t a place for free storage. They are meant to be clean, pleasant and safe places for residents to use. Right now, they are not being used as intended at all. And we pay taxes for those public spaces, to boot.

    14. EL says:

      Another “encampment” is on the northern median of Broadway at W. 111th St.

      • Steven Marc says:

        All just words that go nowhere but sugar coat the real problem, I just want our neighborhood to be safe.

        I take walks in the morning and at night and have been harassed repeatedly..

        It is very hard to stay safe and keep my sanity..Gail Brewer and every other political figure just provides political answers which ultimately doesn’t help

    15. Never forget... says:

      This is good news that Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer is finally getting involved and starting something to better the UWS and it’s better what City Council Member Helen Rosenthal did by tricking everybody into this mess before leaving us.
      Back in the 1960s and 1970s the city didn’t have housing for the homeless and they were living anywhere they could throughout the Upper Westside, breaking into cars every night stealing the radios out of them just anything they can get their hands on. Remembering we try to plant flowers and window box’s and around trees beds. Waking up the next morning and finding the flowers would be stolen. Drugs users was running rampant… Homeless people living in tents, everywhere even going to the bathroom right out in the open on sidewalks and between park cars, it was one big nightmare. This-time-around it’s not any better but at least they’ The homeless are hidden in the hotels at night. But how long will that be lasting until the city can’t afford it and then the homeless will be back living on our streets. Yes, People wanna move away with their families and getting better housing deals in the suburbs from the banks…In general people just want to move and leave New York behind. New York will survive this but it will take some time to recover to where it was 6mo’s ago.

      We accomplish one thing back than for our late Mayor Lindsay… Which was…to save “The Upper West Side”. And that we did for the last 52 years.

      It’s time for us to get involved and work together!!!!

    16. CJ says:

      A quick walk tonight to run errands in our community — “featuring” — a vulgar, screaming lady ranting nonsensically in the median at WEA/95; a lady with all her bags sleeping in the vestibule of Wells Fargo at 90/Bway whilst I deposited a check, a bare ass man under the scaffolding at 94/Bway adjacent to our fruit and veggie guy.

      I spent the majority of today delivering free meals on the UES in the 90s at NYCHA. I didn’t see nearly the decay as we have here on the UWS.

      What gives?

      • Your captain says:

        What gives you say?
        Get use to the new normal I say!
        Rough Roads ahead and fasten your seatbelt it’s going to be a bumpy ride!

      • CuriousCat says:

        If its the same lady, the 95/WEA lady is prolific…she’s out there all day and has been for months…I haven’t had any issue with her, I more just wonder who the heck she talks to all day long (usually has either a phone or a macbook that she talks into).

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        the “vulgar screaming lady” on the median of W End at 95th is a young man who appears to be composing/practicing rap poems. He is not homeless but a resident of a permanent supportive housing building in the area. He is somewhat loud, but is doing it on a busy street (W 95th) with lots of louder noise. Yes, his raps are profane, but he is also harmless.

        And how do people know he is not the next musical genius?

        Let the guy be. He’s not hurting anyone. This is NYC, not a gated suburb.

        As a neighbor of mine said, “what ever happened to live and let live?”

        • Small Business Owner says:

          Bruce, I’m a new small business owner who constantly has your “future music genius” come to my windows and stand in front screaming his angry “lyrics” at people. It is ruining my business and I have to call the police to help me. I have invested my life savings into my small business in this community and it is being ruined by this person and the others who are screaming on the streets. Customers will not come in my door because they don’t want to walk past someone screaming at the door.

          Is this fair to me?

          Think about how this affects other people and THEIR lives. Everyone should get help but everyone should be respected and supported. I’m posting this at 12:40am because I can’t sleep thinking about how I’m going to pay rent this month when I have to be constantly trying to make my doorway safe for a customer to want to come in. Please think about how this situation affects everyone and why we can’t always just “let live”.

          • Bruce Bernstein says:

            reply to Small Business Owner:

            where is your business? I have never seen the person in question on Broadway, nor anywhere other than West End Avenue, which is now a pedestrian mall on most days.

            You just opened up in the W. 90s?

            Certainly with all the lurid stories being bandied about, you will excuse my skepticism. This guy is not a deranged screamer.

    17. Delores Del Rio says:

      PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do something about the shantytown that has sprung up under the scaffolding on Broadway between 84th and 85th Streets. There are more than 20 suitcases piled up there and as many as five people spending the night, three of whom spend all day there, and piss on the street.

    18. Uwsideguy says:

      I’m about to make lots of friends here but… my god people relax. Yeah there are some homeless people on the streets. In a few months they will be gone. You people are blowing a transitory annoyance into a mob frenzy.

    19. Senior says:

      What is going to happen when FEMA stops payment for these hotels? I was under the impression the contract is only until October.

    20. Time for a change says:

      The New York City Democrats lost my support after this homeless fiasco going on. I’m going with the Republicans.

    21. Ladybug says:

      This really confirms that I don’t want to come home. So very sad – After 68 years I may just finally abandon the neighborhood and the city 😢.

    22. Balebusta says:

      I hope this actually does get addressed. I expect to be accused of NIMBYism, but if I share how I brought supplies from my clinic (sanitizer, hibiclens, masks, water) to many of these individuals, then I will be accused of “virtue signaling.” It is a lose lose with the radical left. I feel for these folks, they need help and support. And we all should be able to exist in a neighborhood that is safe and clean (and not just the UWS — every neighborhood!). I stopped handing out supplies when I was threatened by one person & when it became clear that doing so was potentially putting myself in an unsafe situation.

    23. Wendy says:

      I’m not sure what people here don’t understand about the fact that the police, nor any other agency, cannot forcibly make a homeless person go to a shelter, or any other facility….. unless they are a danger to others or to themselves, i.e. caught in the act being violent, self-harming, or acting plain insane in a threatening manner. Anyone who has had a mentally ill friend or relative knows this sad fact. If you want to work to change the laws, please do. Til then, why not come up with some other ideas, or get involved in helping the homeless. If you remove the seating on Broadway, they will just go into the parks and live there. This is really a societal problem – by no means restricted to NYC. If it was easy, it would have been fixed a long time ago. Homelessness has been a problem for decades in NYC.

    24. Act now says:

      I wish Gale would talk about the history of halfway homes and homelessness in the uws and the impact it has had on the neighborhood. What is happening now with close to a thousand homeless man requiring substance abuse support and sex offenders receiving housing privileges at fancy hotels blocks away from schools, is the culmination of fail policies and neglect by politicians like her.

      • davidaron60 says:

        Nah,I would say it’s more like the last 40 years of failed and completely bankrupt neo-liberal policies put in place by our government that have caused the inequalities in our society to come into full view and it took a pandemic to do it. We can change this…if we want to.

    25. Cordcutter says:

      I’m sure there will be a different thread about it, but interested to know who joined the zoom call – Use of Hotels for Protection of Shelter Clients from Covid-19. Thoughts?

    26. Paul says:

      There are obvious better places to shelter 500 homeless. They’ve been placed here to prop up the empty hotels, and many of them are publicly urinating, defecating, masturbating, shooting up, od’ing, harassing assaulting and robbing. Manhattan’s finest middle class residential community is being ravaged at taxpayer expense.

    27. Da Homeless Hero says:

      I appreciate the response from Borough President Gale Bewer. We spoke briefly outside of the Lucerne and she indicated her desire to make things better for the homeless and the UWS community. I took the initiative to send her a 14 point list of suggestions and hope she received it. I must say that some of what is in her letter is also on my list which suggests that she is on top of things. Much appreciated.

    28. Kevin Ferguson says:

      I work at a covid hotel. The city response to the homeless situation is a farce. No mental health or medical services are provided. Lack of client centerness by staff. Safety is an issue. This is about numbers and capital. Forget housing assistance. No real outreach is being performed.

      • ADB says:

        It’s really important to keep this in mind. Just stashing people away is not enough!

      • Da Homeless Hero says:

        You’re absolutely right. It’s a mess and I’m hearing nothing about housing. All I’m told is that it’s a waiting game and everything is slowed down due to the pandemic. The vouchers for many is useless in that they don’t match the market level rent prices thus making it difficult to find suitable housing. The thought is that this is going to be a very, very long process

    29. Jo Anna Wallace-Feder says:

      We need a new Mayor!!! He doesn’t do ANYTHING for the UWS population. Lets everyone out of jail, gets rid of bail and then defunds the police. This man is not for the people of the UWS. We need to get rid of him. What is happening to our beautiful neighborhood. Crime deserves punishment!! If we don’t do something fast we will be just like Chicago which is a disaster. Please Mr Cumo. I am a nurse. I know exactly what you did. You can fool many, but not me. Do something for goodness sake. Make up for the lives you lost. Save the rest of us. Get rid of the mayor and get someone who is going to restore our neighborhood to the way it was under Rudy. You only fool stupid people. Anyone who knows anything knows the two of you indeed you are failing us. Vote for a Republican that is our only chance. Everyone— or we will lose our city. Look what is happening . I repeat this Democratic administration is going to trash our amazing city and especially our amazing UWS Remember at the ballot box. All blue states are falling apart. NY will be next. Your home depends on it.

    30. Woowoo says:

      There is quite a group on Central Park North. Seems that drugs are exchanging hands and people having sex. In addition drug taking, using the street as a bathroom and very disruptive behaviour. I feel for people who find themselves in this situation and there must be a better way for the city to support them.

    31. MSM says:

      The former Park 79 hotel at 117 West 79th is slated to be converted to section 8 housing soon. One more homeless hotel in the neighborhood.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        reply to MSM:

        Section 8 is subsidized Low income permanent housing. It is not a “homeless hotel.” More low and moderate income permanent housing is desperately needed. Maybe then we wouldn’t have so many homeless.

        If you’re going to complain about housing subsidies, i suggest you start with the Mortgage Interest Deduction, by far the largest housing subsidy in the US. It disproportionately goes to upper middle and upper income people.

        Section 8 $s go to landlords. Public housing is a far better solution, but it has been totally defunded (talk about “defunding”). But this will not be a homeless shelter.

        • Boris says:

          Landlords who own low income housing are also entitled to get a mortgage interest deduction. You really go out of your way to take swipes at people who own things.

          • Bruce Bernstein says:

            reply to Boris:

            the mortgage interest deduction is for primary residences and i think can apply to a second residence as well, up to a limit. It does not apply to landlords owning rental properties, though i think they get loads of other tax breaks.

            I simply enjoy pointing out how heavily subsidized by all of us upper income people are. Welfare for the rich: the American way.

            • Boris says:

              Landlords are able to expense interest on loans for rental properties. It’s a regular expense. That has the same effect as a private homeowner’s deduction for mortgage interest.

        • Da Homeless Hero says:

          Thanks so much Bruce for pointing that out. Ironically, on the issue of race, while in NYC the majority of people in the shelter system is Black and Brown, the homeless population throughout the US is predominately white. We get stigmatized in such a bad way and it’s important to understand that we ALL could be in the same boat whether due to a fire, a divorce or an issue that needs to be addressed… Thanks always for adding clarity to these discussions

      • YIMBY says:

        Section 8 housing is NOT a “homeless hotel”. It is permanent, affordable housing, and absolutely necessary.

    32. mark says:

      empty words from empty vessels

    33. Scott R says:

      There is a need for shelters with adequate spacing in this current pandemic. However, it is apparent that neither DHS nor our local reps can enact enforcement that will allow those who are mentally ill or drug addicted to be treated with proper services while also insuring the safety of the community. As I see it, there have always been homeless people and it is unfortunate. But, while as much as there are people in this neighborhood who have compassion, there are also people in this neighborhood who have compassion AND no longer feel safe walking down the street – alone or with their children. It has become unsafe and unsanitary. It’s time for new leadership and for the community itself to bring back the UWS because the politicians have already failed us.

      I am outside on my street at least twice per week cleaning and sweeping up. If we all pitch in, we’ll feel better, and it will make a difference.

    34. Rob G. says:

      Let’s not forget that the homeless shelter problem on the UWS started under her watch as Council Member. With the community now flexing its muscles in opposition and standing up for itself, she’s finally jumping on the bandwagon. Let’s hope she stays on focus.

      • Bruce Bernstein says:

        Rob G. said:

        “Let’s not forget that the homeless shelter problem on the UWS started under her watch as Council Member.”

        Nice way to try to tar someone. I suppose you mean when Mayor Bloomberg put a homeless shelter on W. 95 — a shelter Gale Brewer opposed?

        I don’t think that was the first shelter on the UWS. But it did create a huge hubbub in opposition — it was going to destroy the neighborhood, they said.

        Apparently it wasn’t the best run shelter in the world, but it was there for 10 years and the block did just fine. (It is the block where i live.) No increase in crime; propoerty values continued to rise. The shelter was moved to a building on W 94th a year or two back.

        Pinning this on Gale Brewer, the most conscientious of elected officials, is ludicrous. Why don’t you go after Bloomberg?

        • Rob G. says:

          You are correct – Bloomberg shoved Freedom House down our throats. so I will happily tar him for that. But you are 100% wrong in two areas. 1) Gale Brewer blocked these building from being used to rent rooms to tourists, which encouraged the landlord to make that sweet, expensive deal with the City and transform it into a shelter. And by the way, Brewer always yammers on about “transparency”, but I don’t recall her outright taking a stand against these shelters and other supportive housing which has strangled the neighborhood. 2) The shelter a “hubub”, because of the violence and disturbances caused by the residents, which was instrumental in the decline of the West 90s. Nice how you continually mock and dismiss the real world complaints of your neighbors.

    35. Jeff G says:

      I’m surprised no one mentioned the undocked Citibike. It’s either stolen or someone is running up quite a tab on their account as it sits in the median for days. Not the only one I’ve seen.

      • BroadyGuy says:

        There’s a guy on 95th who always has one, he went into one of the shelters briefly and left the Citibike outside unattended for a few minutes. I wasn’t paying attention so I didn’t see what happened, but he then came outside and was frantic that it was gone.

        I always wonder – has the tracking on these bikes been disabled or how does that work exactly? The guy I’m referring to sometimes locks the bike up, so it does not appear to be a valid citibike rental.

    36. EGF says:

      Somebody please tell me what can we do as private citizens?? Our elected officials have abandoned us and we are without any leadership. It’s painful to watch our city literally fall apart around us, not to mention our nation. I feel helpless!

    37. Adam Wolf says:

      It’s an industry
      Destroy stable neighborhoods from the inside
      It means the city will have bigger government
      More union jobs
      So get used to it
      We need a republican mayor again

    38. Karen says:

      Please let Gale Brewer know that the 96th street and broadway subway stop (96th street side) is now housing at least 3 homeless folks too, so 95th and Broadway is a bit limited in scope