Skip to comments.N.C. homeless shelter evicts pregnant woman, three sons (Christmas spirit)
Posted on 12/24/2004 6:10:16 PM PST by jb6
From Staff Reports
Posted 2:05 p.m.
ELIZABETH CITY (AP) The director of a homeless shelter says he was right to evict a 21-year-old pregnant woman and her three children after the woman violated one of the shelter's rules by allowing her children's uncle to visit in her room.
"We have to have order," said the Rev. Oliver S. Robinson, director of the Tabernacle of Faith Church Outreach Center. "She herself created this situation. She is a young woman who does not want to listen to anybody. And it don't matter what time of year it is, winter time, Christmas time, cold time or whatever."
Valan Garland and her three boys were evicted Tuesday from the shelter, where they had stayed for about four months while waiting for an income-based apartment to open. She paid $50 a month as a donation.
On Tuesday, however, she broke one of the shelter's strict rules, Garland said. The paternal aunt and uncle of her three children came to visit their nephews. When the shelter's caretaker, Rhonda O'Neal, returned, Garland says she realized there was a man in her room.
Garland said she asked the couple to continue their visit outside, which they did. But Robinson told Garland she had to leave, giving until 9 a.m. Wednesday to vacate.
"These are not the easiest people to deal with," Robinson said of shelter clients. "We have to have rules and order."
Garland, eight months pregnant, began crying as she strapped her children into their car seats after loading the trunk of her car with belongings. She then left with Xavier, 1, Javonte, 3, and T'Keel, 5, still in their bedclothes.
At least until Christmas, the family plans to stay with Garland's mother in a one-room apartment in Edenton.
The two-story shelter has been a soup kitchen since 1996. In 1998 also became a shelter for women and children. The approximately 2,000-square-foot building has 10 beds in two apartments and a loft.
Garland sees no parallels between her situation and that of the biblical Mary and Joseph, who couldn't find any place to stay for the night on what's considered the first Christmas Eve.
"I don't know if I feel like this is related to Jesus and Mary," Garland said. "But I do feel like it has something to do with the devil. The devil has to put it in your heart to put children out in the night three days before Christmas."
Robinson said his shelter is a credit to the community.
"These people need tough love," Robinson said. "I don't feel comfortable with it. God don't get no pleasure punishing us. But he does it. Jesus would have done the same thing."
Why doesn't the author state the obvious. Where is the father?
She has a mother with an apartment, and an uncle, who lives somewhere, and a car to get around with. Sounds to me like she isn't going to freeze to death and neither are her children.
Maybe she could do something radical, like her social worker could arrange for childcare while she went to work. After 4 months "waiting for housing," I would bet this incident is the last straw, not the first.
Jeez, dude, have a heart.
"Garland sees no parallels between her situation and that of the biblical Mary and Joseph"
This is as bad as the 32 people evicted from a church in Springfield MO. Regardless of where the father is, this wasn't right.
She has aunts and uncles to stay with. If she was so poor - how much was her car worth? Wanna bet she has a cell phone?
According to the latest economic reports from the E.U., Germany has just surpassed the economy of Arkansas (the poorest state in the USA - usually) Our "poor", if they moved to the EU, would be in the TOP 10% richest in europe!!
I do not feel sorry for 90% of our "poor". They have a hell of a lot more than I did 20 years ago.
A good portion of your typical occupants are alcoholic, drug addicted or mentally ill. Many have trouble living by the rules (which is usually why they are there in the first place.) In that sort of environment, unfortunately, you can't start making exceptions and there have to be consistent consequences. She knew the rule, she broke it, she's out.
Also, according to the manager, this lady has caused a lot of trouble and friction in this shelter. The management may appear heartless, but they have their other clients to look out for.
I don't get what the big problem was.
I don't think so bub!
They probably used that as an excuse for evicting her.
21 y/o with 3 childern and one on the way....wow.. that is alot to deal with......
Likely answer--which one?
Wow! Ummmm... Not to be a scrooge or anything, but I think she needs to take a good hard look at her situation before she decides to pop out anymore children.
As unfortunate as this sounds... I wouldn't be surprised if this news story gets her kids taken away from her by Social Services.
Anyone want to take odds that in this case it's fathers? If any two of those children had the same father, I'd be amazed.
And such creative names, too:
Xavier, 1, Javonte, 3, and T'Keel, 5
She lived there for four months; she certainly knew the rules. They're generous enough to run a homeless shelter, so I'm sure they weren't just looking for an excuse to kick her out unless she had a long record of trouble-making. And if they make an exception here, what's to stop other occupants from breaking the rules?
"But I do feel like it has something to do with the devil.
That's gratitude for you. She's been living there for four months and now she thinks the devil is involved.
As Nietzsche said: Pity for the botched only perpetuates decadence.
They lived in their car near Knightstown, Indiana for a couple of years.
There's holy ground around there somewhere because nobody bothered them, and they were kept safe and warm until the father found work and a roof.
For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, (Mat 25:35 NIV)
I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.' (Mat 25:36 NIV)
"Then the righteous will answer him, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? (Mat 25:37 NIV)
When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? (Mat 25:38 NIV)
When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?' (Mat 25:39 NIV)
"The King will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.' (Mat 25:40 NIV)
"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. (Mat 25:41 NIV)
For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, (Mat 25:42 NIV)
I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.' (Mat 25:43 NIV)
"They also will answer, 'Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?' (Mat 25:44 NIV)
"He will reply, 'I tell you the truth, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.' (Mat 25:45 NIV)
"Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life." (Mat 25:46 NIV)
These shelter operators DO peace, love, and charity every single day of the year. It isn't a holiday feel good for them, it's what they do. Many more hours than most of us give. They don't throw people out without cause... and every single one of them has a story.
The paternal aunt and uncle of her three children came to visit their nephews
...it seems the three children share a father. Unless they were fathered by different men who are each others' brothers.
The shelter operators were doing far more work in the spirit of those verses than most of us (though I can't speak for you), but that doesn't mean that they ignore repeated rule violations.
Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, "Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?" (Mat 18:21 NIV)
Jesus answered, "I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times. (Mat 18:22 NIV)
I have a great program called QuickVerse and boy you can look quotes up in a flash. Has anyone else tried it. It took me a long time to find it again for win98. I used to use it all the time in window 3.1
we noticed : )
So go work in a shelter. It's a dang hard job providing services to everyone who needs help and forgiveness. I am sure they could use your help.
In this case, the common good overrides the individual's needs. Can you imagine if they didn't have rules or if everyone broke the rules?
The place would cease to exist. It would be a complete failure.
Rules are needed; people's actions have consequences.
This woman's eviction may help hundreds of people in the future because the safe house will survive and the place will be there for others.
T'Keel, 5 is 5 years old so actually his name is just T'Keel
If she was there for months beforehand and has had trouble more than once couldn't they have waited two days before tossing her out? I am all for tough love and following the rules but you do have to have some compassion, imo.
Peace on earth goodwill towards man. God bless you all this Christmas eve and thanks for the lively debate. I love it as long as we can all agree to disagree and still be friends. I think that is what this board is for. Gotta go. Later
Yes... She was there for months, has been trouble before, and was thrown out. I've worked with the people who do this kind of work and I'd trust their judgment over a story designed to make us feel sorry for this woman.
I feel sorry for her too. She'll get another chance, and another, I hope. She's young, she's got a tough row to hoe, who knows, maybe this will put her back in touch with her family.
On the other hand, think of the Christmas miracle this is for someone else who can now get in to this shelter for Christmas. Someone else who now has this chance.
Permit us the same Godly wisdom. Thank you.
The proper question is, "Where are the fathers?" As in plural.
I agree... they could have shown compassion for the children and let them have a Christmas.
To many people get caught up in harsh love and miss out on the love part.
I hope you realize that in this verse Jesus is speaking about a Christian "brother" and not just another human being whois not a believer.
I'm split on this issue.
On the one hand, she was thrown out before Christmas, with her children punished for her breaking the rules...
On the other, She must have known the rules in the first place, and should have obeyed them for her children...
I guess this place had a lot of "Uncles, Brothers, and male cousins" visiting in the past and is tring to cut down on the "pregnant young woman in the shelter" sterotype.