We thank Douglas B.K. Moylan, Guam’s attorney general for his efforts so far to eradicate crime and situations that threaten the safety of our island.
Of course, crime is rarely completely removed in societies – but any reduction is good and shows we are on the right path.
Specifically, the administration, the attorney general, our mayors, and government agencies are going to be tackling the homelessness on our island.
We were glad to see the number of representatives of government agencies at the Feb. 24 press conference to launch the Homeless Relocation Initiative.
Additionally, the attorney general has taken on the issue of panhandlers in our villages.
Both these groups contain members of the community whose situations deserve understanding and help.
But they also contain individuals who are violent and who harass our residents.
Reasons why people are homeless, or panhandling can vary and it was good to see the various agencies and organizations in attendance at the press conference to launch the Homeless Relocation Initiative.
It is almost certain that some of their situations are complicated by substance abuse.
The homeless population contains families with children and some of the panhandlers are obviously young.
We have become accustomed to seeing these individuals panhandling as we go about our business and are also accustomed to being approached at island businesses for money, sometimes aggressively.
Homeless individuals on the street and panhandling of tourists – who are often on foot – does not create wonderful memories for our visitors, especially when we position our island as a safe destination, or a family destination.
It makes our residents uneasy too.
This paper believes we have developed a community apathy to both these populations and a reluctant acceptance that “this is the way it is.”
Moylan has begun to fulfill aims that were a part of his election platform. We understand that not all in the legal community agree with all of his aims.
But on these issues this paper is glad to see he is taking action. mbj