Matthew Vernon Whalan

‘It’s very hard to leave. But either way, you have to go. What else’re you gonna do?’

For one woman, an arrest leads to a chain of misfortune that has kept her on the streets in Florida and in Brattleboro

ROnda-Jane, 51, has lived in Brattleboro “a little over 20 years,” on and off. She is an artist and poet who has experienced homelessness and abuse throughout her life.

Matthew Whalan: How long have you been homeless?

Ronda-Jane: The past two or three years. Off and on. (Pause.) Due to no fault of my own, by the way.

M.V.W.: How did you become homeless?...

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Time for demands — and dialogue

The belief that Brattleboro town government is already doing enough about homelessness is just another version of the belief that we don’t need to do very much at all

It is important that the Selectboard has ensured that porta-potties be placed downtown. We have finally decided as a community that homeless people, too, have the right to go to the bathroom. It's an achievement that should be neither understated nor overstated. However, I cannot help but feel disappointed...

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A homeless revolution

Homeless people plan protest to demand access to housing, dignity and respect, and a voice in the democratic process

We in the homeless community and our allies feel that the police enforce, and threaten to enforce, the trespassing ordinances randomly - not consistently - and on public property, which, for the homeless, is like being terrorized; you never know when they will show up. Due to the recent...

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Policing homeless life and the need to resist

James Douglas, 60, has been homeless for three years after he left an unhealthy relationship. “I became homeless 'cause I had no place else to go,” he says. “I get a monthly income - Social Security. But that doesn't pay rent.” Douglas, who lives in Brattleboro, was arrested on July 11, at 12:30 a.m. for sleeping in Plaza Park downtown. People who sleep there at night do so because they have no other safe place to go. Now that park...

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