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Drug Crisis in Full View as MLB All Star Game Approaches

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Countdown is on

First half of July, #Seattle will be on the global stage hosting the Major League Baseball (@MLB) All-Star Game at T-Mobile Park (@TMobilePark.) The stadium is located in SODO, just minutes from #Chinatown-ID and the downtown core. But the homeless and drug crisis remains problematic in this neighborhood.

This Memorial Day weekend, I watched baseball fans (@Yankees @Pirates @Mariners) struggle to find parking on the side streets. The usual spots are now being taken up by massive RV’s. Drug addicts are smoking fentanyl in front of kids headed to the game. Holgate St. is relatively clear, but new encampments are entrenched on Utah Ave S. and 4th Ave S. If it’s a challenge right now to avoid all this, imagine what it will be like when the out of town tourists come to visit.

Councilmember Tammy Morales (@CMTammyMorales) is probably facing even more pressure than ever to address this problem in her district. Where is she? I had some REAL TALK with two guys who work in the area. They remain skeptical about the city’s chances to get this cleaned up before All-Star weekend, but are hoping for the best. They know all the same characters I encounter on the streets each day. And sadly, many of these men and women are the same folks who have rejected help numerous times in the past year. What do we do about the chronically homeless, mentally ill, and drug addicted? Here’s a preview of what’s happening on the ground right now.

Jonathan Choe

Journalist and Senior Fellow, Center on Wealth and Poverty
Jonathan Choe is a journalist and Senior Fellow with Discovery Institute's Center on Wealth and Poverty, covering homelessness issues for its Fix Homelessness initiative. Prior to joining Discovery, Choe spent several years as one of the lead reporters at KOMO-TV, consistently the top rated television station in Seattle. His in depth stories on crime and deep dive investigations into the homeless crisis led to measurable results in the community, including changes in public policy. Choe has more than two decades of experience in television news behind the scenes and in front of the camera for ABC, NBC, FOX, CBS, and Tribune. He has also been nominated and honored with multiple industry awards including an Emmy. Choe spent several years teaching classes on emerging media and entrepreneurship to under privileged youth in inner city Chicago. As an independent journalist, Choe also contributes regularly to the Mill Creek View and Lynnwood Times and has reported on exclusive stories in the past year for Daily Wire and The Postmillennial.