Speaking to a friend a few days ago, she told me that she is really depressed because her 16-year-old daughter told her that she wants to drop out of school because she is not interested in its so-called education. My friend’s daughter considers herself a beautiful girl to be able to find a job at any place she so wishes.
My friend said her daughter doesn’t understand that she’s not going to get a well-paying job without a high school diploma at least.
I understood her point because the dream of every parent, especially if they are not well educated themselves, is to see a son or daughter receiving a diploma or certificate of any kind.
After listening to her I thought, what good is it to me to have four university degrees, speak several languages and two other dialects
when the reality is that I have become the maid of homeless people in the Las Vegas downtown area. I am not saying that the position of maid
is degrading; at least maids usually work in nice places, have two meals a day, work with fine people and earn a salary to support their families.
What I am trying to say is that I have become a maid of the homeless people who are inconsiderate, disrespectful and abusive toward people.
It is depressing to come to work every morning to clean urine, feces, and napkins full of excrement without knowing what kind of diseases they are spreading.
Instead of enjoying the fact of being able to work and interact with clients, coming to work in the mornings is in fact very depressing.
Everybody goes to work and first, has a cup of coffee and then plans every detail of the day. For me, coming to work means dispatching all the sleeping people — who leave behind them nothing but dirt— , cleaning the parking lot of tons of newspapers they spread under trucks so they can sleep peacefully; and yes, cleaning up feces, urine, condoms and everything else you can imagine.
Just last Monday at 1:45 in the morning, a man was caught on camera doing #2 and wiping his behind not even in the parking lot, but on the back porch of the office, leaving behind all his dirt. Later in the morning, he had the audacity to stop by the office asking for a book of matches, probably thinking that nobody had seen him.
I was so angry that I told him, “I don’t have matches, but what I do have is information for you as to where the closest gas stations are where you can go and do your business or take care of your necessities. Now go back and clean up your mess because I am not your maid or your nanny.”
“Well, I’m sorry, but I had to go,” said the man. It really roiled my nerves and I told the man, “We all have physiological needs but we don’t go on other people’s property; why don’t you go to the homeless corridor?”
I will never forget when former Mayor Oscar Goodman wanted to set up the old Jean prison for homeless people to have a place to sleep, take a shower and yes, be able to go to the bathroom, as any normal person must do. The plan would have given those people the opportunity to be clean and presentable to look for a job.
Everybody that disliked Mr. Goodman (including local reporters) started attacking the Mayor claiming he wanted to put the homeless in jail. How stupid was that comment?
They now have the homeless corridor in downtown Las Vegas. But to be able to go there, one must be clean of drugs and alcohol and that, apparently, is too much to ask of the homeless.
You can hear many of the homeless claiming they want to be free; well of course — they prefer to be bugging others and getting fried under the sun during the summer, but also free to pick up their government check from a debit card every 3rd of the month and go right to the closest liquor store and by the 10th of the month they have not even a single penny left.
I wonder what all those people playing politics — the ones who ran for City Council — plan to do about the situation. Ward 3 is the worst of the worst, and the Councilwoman is nowhere to be found.
Perly Viasmensky is the General Manager of the Las Vegas Tribune. She writes a weekly column in this newspaper. To contact Perly Viasmensky, email her at pviasmensky@lasvegas tribune.com.