There will be no more tents and a greater police presence along Boston’s “Methadone Mile.” On November 1, a new law implemented by Boston’s Democratic mayor will go into effect that will allow police enforcement to clear out a homeless tent city that has been used as a cover for drug use and other offenses.
The “Methadone Mile” intersection of Melnea Cass Boulevard and Massachusetts Avenue in the southern region of Boston has long been home to tarps and tents, as well as the regrettable habitation of drug addicts.
The area has a high rate of crime, which is why Mayor Michelle Wu decided to start the process of dismantling the tent encampment on November 1
Methadone Mile Crime Rate
The Boston Herald said that the new rule has been communicated to tent city residents in multiple languages. A well-organized team of social workers and authorities will greet any arrivals to the camp and let them know that no further tents will be permitted.
Wu told local outlet WCVB that while there is no silver bullet for the complicated and long-standing issues that cities across the nation are dealing with—the opiate crisis, homelessness, and mental health—we know that in Boston, we have an excellent understanding of not only who needs products and services but also how to connect them with them most effectively.
Michelle Wu took over the issue from former Mayor Marty Walsh when he was called up to serve in the Biden administration, and the Herald reports that she tried her best to get the 80–90 people who come in each day connected to social services, but the problem remained. Reports state the number was lowered from approximately 200 every day.
Wu has three steps in mind to address the issue: first, he says, let the police remove the tents and tarps; next, he says, get them connected to housing and other services.
The Herald reports that although those at Mass and Cass will no longer be permitted to camp there, they will be given the opportunity to go to temporary accommodation. Wu’s team claimed that in addition to being utilized for shelter, the tents and tarps are also used to conceal drug usage and other criminal activity.
According to the Herald, City Council President Ed Flynn has discussed his demand for a “zero tolerance” policy at Mass and Cass with the Mayor.
Flynn told the Herald on Friday that “we have rules in place, and people need to follow the rules.” They must be detained and face legal action if they violate any criminal laws.
Michelle Wu Strategy
Wu’s third strategy calls for “heavy” enforcement in the area in an effort to combat crime.
We want to make it explicit to the people who come to the city with an alternate intent, whether it’s to sell narcotics or criminal activity or to harm the people that are in these parts, that we’re not going to tolerate that, Michael Cox, the city’s police commissioner, said.
The policy will go into effect as the state deals with an ongoing migration problem that is allegedly being exacerbated by an antiquated “right-to-shelter law” that allows migrant families to receive emergency housing on public funds, according to a Republican lawmaker.
The state announced earlier this month that it is expected to reach its shelter capacity by the end of October, which is 7,500 families, or over 24,000 people.
The elimination of COVID-era programs, a shortage of affordable housing, and “federal laws on immigration and work permission” are just a few of the many issues that Gov. Maura Healy listed as contributing.
While he’s happy to see Mayor Wu address the significant issues on Methadone Mile, Republican state representative Peter Durant told Fox News Digital in an interview that he would rather not see the immigration shelter crisis worsen and lead to more tent towns.
Even though we’re spending a tremendous amount of money housing these new arrivals, tent cities are still appearing. He claimed that there was no place left for anyone else.
Under Durant’s amendment, recipients of “right-to-shelter” subsidies would have to be lawfully resident for a minimum of three years. According to Durant, his suggestion will probably qualify some of the homeless people who are moving out of the “Methadone Mile” tents for shelter.