Some Question Whether Homeless Population Making Dover Library L - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Some Question Whether Homeless Population Making Dover Library Less Welcoming

Posted: Apr 11, 2018 8:08 AM Updated:

DOVER, Del. --- Many of the roughly 350 estimated homeless individuals who live in the Dover area take shelter at the city's public library, a location where they can take shelter from the elements and some times meet with social worker.

However, some people like Will Garfinkel of Dover believe the library may be getting used more like a social service center than a library --- something he said doesn't necessarily help the homeless population or other library visitors.

"It's not the city's responsibility to be a social service center. That's not what our tax dollars are for," he said.

The topic was partially discussed at a recent city council workshop meeting, in which some council members noted constituents had expressed concerns about inappropriate behavior occurring in the library.

Councilman Matt Lindell suggested hours being expanded for the police cadet program at the library to ensure people are using the building appropriately.

"Taxpayers aren't paying to go into a building and for it to look like someone else's home," he said.

However, Library Director Margie Cyr said the library is a public property that is open to everyone, so long as they follow rules for the building.

The social worker program, which is a state initiative that's expanding around Delaware, also helps the library fulfill its mission, Cyr said.

"The library is continuing to provide access to information, which is what we always do," she said. 

 

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