McAllen Code Enforcement Dept. Helps Guide Homeless
MCALLEN – McAllen code enforcement workers took time out of their day to help the homeless.
Environmental health specialist Guadalupe Flores said he along with 10 other crews hit the streets Friday to help direct people to the Salvation Army. The group also provides blankets and jackets.
“The rest of the day, we’ll just go on and off during our duties for work. We’ll be looking around normal places,” he said.
Flores said sometimes people don’t follow through on their advice to seek a warm place to stay. He said they think the cold weather won’t be problem.
“They may not have information on how cold it’s going to get. So hopefully, they’ll seek shelter tonight,” he said.
One homeless man we spoke to said he was indeed looking for a warm place to stay. He requested his identity kept hidden. He said poor decision in his youth landed him in cartel hands. He escaped the lifestyle, but said he still fears for his life.
“I was a foul mouth kid growing up, drug addict, thief, liar… As I grew older, things changed for me,” he said.
The man said he’s been homeless for four years. He said the forecasted temperatures have him concerned.
He’s glad Flores spotted him. He said the jacket and blanket he received will help him through until he can get to a shelter.
“Today, I’m out here in the freezing rain. Trying to make money, asking for people’s blessings to make enough money to get a room for the night,” the homeless man said. “As long as I have a dollar in my pocket to eat, that’s a blessing enough.”
Flores said McAllen code enforcement will continue to guide those in need during cold winter days. He added the department tends to monitor and provide assistance to people living on the streets, especially when the temperatures drop.