Grand Junction’s Homelessness Issue: Calls For Reimagining Solutions”


In an ongoing battle against homelessness, Grand Junction is facing criticism for its approach, which some argue targets the homeless rather than addressing the root causes of the issue. Jacob Richards, a concerned resident, points out that the focus should shift from targeting homeless individuals to tackling the underlying problems that lead to homelessness. He emphasizes that a book club and more studies won’t suffice and advocates for measures such as rent control, city-owned affordable housing, and a local minimum wage that matches the cost of living as viable solutions.


‘Out of sight, out of mind’ not the right approach

Drawing parallels to past strategies in Denver, Fred Stewart questions the decision to close Whitman Park, a gathering place for the homeless. He believes that relocating these individuals to a more hidden location is not a solution and suggests considering a safe and socially suitable space for those experiencing homelessness, adjacent to the police station. He challenges the notion that “out of sight, out of mind” is the right approach.

A fence around Whitman Park is a bad idea

Alden Hislop, a long-time resident near Whitman Park, opposes the city’s decision to fence off the park. He argues that beautifying and revitalizing the park with regular events could be a more productive approach. Hislop advocates for maintaining an open and welcoming space rather than using fencing to displace individuals elsewhere.


Reader disappointed in sheriff’s 9/11 remarks

Mesa County Sheriff Todd Rowell’s recent remarks regarding first responders’ lack of support have raised concerns among some residents. Dena Dickinson expresses disappointment in the sheriff’s comments, viewing them as an airing of personal grievances rather than a tribute to the fallen. She argues that the loss of trust in law enforcement stems from documented cases of abuse of power, and she calls for introspection and accountability within the law enforcement community to rebuild that trust.

Restore the Balance promotes civil discourse

"As Grand Junction grapples with a surging homeless population, some argue that the city's approach should shift from targeting homeless individuals to addressing the underlying causes. This article explores the debate, highlighting calls for affordable housing, rent control, and a reevaluation of existing strategies."

In response to a letter from Bill Marvel, Betsy Longenecker highlights the importance of distinguishing between “extremist views” and labeling individuals as extremists. She emphasizes the need for respectful discourse and working together to solve problems, rather than resorting to intimidation and division. Longenecker mentions the principles of “Restore the Balance,” which advocates for listening and promoting civil discourse, and suggests that these principles can resonate with a broad audience.


These letters from concerned residents shed light on the complex issue of homelessness and the need for thoughtful, compassionate, and effective solutions. Additionally, they underscore the importance of civil discourse and understanding differing viewpoints in addressing societal challenges.

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