WestSouthwest - April 30, 2014
This week's WestSouthwest examines homelessness, mental illness and how those issues affect veterans.
Kalamazoo reporter Chris Killian, a frequent WMUK contributor, introduces us to a man in Portland, Maine who seeks out the homeless to offer assistance. Roger Goodoak is a Navy veteran, who had his own battles in the past. As he searches the streets for homeless, he encounters a familiar problem - there's never enough blankets.
Ministry with Community of Kalamazoo Program Director Christine Wine talks with WMUK's Gordon Evans about the issue of mental illness. Ministry with Community is a walk-in shelter, open to anyone. Wine says they do see veterans, but it's hard to say how many. The organization tries to eliminate barriers to treatment, so it doesn't ask many questions of people who walk in the doors.
Kalamazoo County Veterans Service Coordinator James Tucker works to get veterans the services they need. Tucker is veteran himself who still serves in the army reserve. He says many veterans are reluctant to seek help for a variety of reasons. But Tucker is working to make sure more people his office is there to help.