Police in Buffalo Create Special Unit to Serve City’s Homeless

Police in Buffalo Create Special Unit to Serve City’s Homeless

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buffalo police chief with homeless - WBZ

Buffalo, New York is becoming a model for the nation, having already reduced its chronically homeless population by a whopping 90 percent in the last three years, and now the city’s police force is offering help.

Officers have been working with homeless advocates to identify anyone on the streets who still needs help. Police Chief Brian Patterson is creating a specially-trained patrol unit to work even more closely with the organizations who provide housing and medical care for the chronically homeless.Cops-graduation-photoby-Julie-Moore

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“Everyone has feelings – everyone has a story – and it’s important for myself to understand people’s story,” Patterson told WIVB-TV. “The only way to do that is to meet people on their terms and (in) their setting, and have great conversations.”

The city’s Transit Authority Police Department has also been working to assist – not arrest – homeless citizens since January. Officials and advocates hope their new collaboration boosts the rate of those in housing or shelters to 100 percent by the year’s end.

(WATCH the video below or READ the report at WIVB-TVPhoto: WIVB video – Story Tip from Gina Marie Littlebird

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