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News Opinion

Shelter death of homeless man was a preventable tragedy

The death of Dana Bolden, 46, from a stab wound to the chest inflicted by another resident at Baltimore's 24-hour homeless shelter, was an entirely preventable tragedy ("Vigil for homeless man killed inside city shelter," March 31).

Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake and city Director of Homeless Services Olivia D. Farrow must ensure that the procedures for checking incoming residents at the homeless shelter for weapons are consistently applied. Such security procedures will ensure the safety of both residents and staff.

Many homeless persons are reticent to come into shelters for fear of being mugged and robbed. Shelter managers need to provide a safe and secure environment for homeless men, women and children awaiting permanent housing, as well as referrals for health care, mental health and addiction treatment.

We must work together to be the Good Samaritan described in the Gospels, and not pass by on the other side of the road while ignoring the homeless and their security.

Richard Shannahan, Lutherville

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