“I’ve slept under bushes in a church parking lot, I know what its like to be out there defenseless with nobody that even cares, they walk past you like you’re invisible,” said Oak Hill resident Dottie Collins.
Collins says she was once in their shoes adding, “We’ve got the homeless, whether we have a roof over their heads or they’re laying out there in the church parking lot. They are here, they’re not invisible, they’re real.”
With the winter season approaching, Collins says it is time for the city of Oak Hill to step up and help build a shelter for these homeless people who she’s seen on the streets, the city park and even at the local Walmart.
One man who was in a homeless shelter in Beckley not too long ago says there is a dire need for one in the Oak Hill area.
“We don’t have a shelter here so everybody who is homeless here kind of just sleeps everywhere. I mean I know a couple of people that sleep in the dugouts just over there. You know winter is coming like you said, it is going to get cold and people are going to get sick. If you stay out here so long in the cold, I mean it’s a sad future but some of these guys might die if there’s not somewhere to stay,” said 19-year-old Timothy Bragg.
Collins says she has gone to the City Council multiple times but still has not gotten an answer.
When WOAY reached out to City Council members we did not hear back. We were able to get in contact with City Manager Bill Hannabass who stated, “I can not speak for the City Council,” when asked about this idea.