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Jorge Olivares, The Bowery Mission’s Staff Knucklehead

January 22, 2015

I just sent this to MTA:

On Sunday evening, January 18, 2014, I arrived at Stop 401294, 14th Street and 7th Ave eastbound, at approximately 9:20 PM.  The 14D bus is scheduled to arrive there at 9:32 PM on Sundays.  At 9:36, I received a text response from 511123 stating that the bus was one stop away.  The bus finally arrived at 9:42.  I did not reach my stop, Avenue D and East 6th Street, until 10:10.  I live in a homeless shelter, and I was punished and threatened for arriving late for 10 PM curfew through no fault of my own.  I wanted to take the L to First Ave to save even more time (but if I can get on a bus by 9:30, I’m not normally late), but the passageway was taped off with a notice that Ls were not running at 6th Ave.  The bus number was 111, or at least that was what was visible in the interior with an unobstructed view.  I don’t recall ever seeing a bus with a three digit number, but three digits, the route, the time, and that a digit may be missing from the interior ought to be enough information to identify the bus and driver.  I am owed restitution for the stress and punishment I was put through.  I was threatened with a transfer if I am ever so much as one minute late again, and this is the first shelter I’ve been in with private rooms.  I don’t think it is right that I should be made to suffer further while the driver, the one in the wrong, gets off scot free. I should receive at least several months worth of unlimited ride Metrocards as restitution, as well as written documentation that the bus was severely behind schedule to present to my case manager.  You can send the Metrocards to [mailing address redacted] and the documentation of bus lateness to John Davis, case manager for Scott Hutchins, 45-51 Avenue D, New York, NY 10003.

Jorge Olivares was the operations manager on duty who kept me waiting in the lobby for over an hour. I told another staff member about that Tuesday night when he let me into the basement for my laundry (one pair of underwear was destroyed, which is why I don’t like this full-service laundry b.s., much as I dislike doing laundry), and he said, “Was it George?” Upon confirmation, he said “George is a knucklehead.” (I don’t think anybody pronounces Jorge the Spanish way in the U.S., for obvious reasons.) As I reposted from hessianwithteeth, never assume malice what can just as easily be attributed to stupidity. I got info from my contact at MFY Legal Services regarding the legality of such unquestionably unethical and abusive behavior. The shelter is not legally allowed to evict me for being 10 minutes late. They are allowed to take my bed and give it to someone else for the night, or make me sleep in another shelter with an empty bed for one night, but they are not allowed to transfer me for it (she didn’t say anything about their right to carelessly throw my stuff into black plastic bags). She told me to call her if it ever happens, although that would be after the fact since I have only her office number, and this sort of thing happens after 10 PM. At my last shelter, one of my roommates threw a fit when he had a late pass and found someone else in his bed and demanded that they give him a new mattress out of fear of bed bugs, and they complied with him. I need to remember to get my case manager to change by bed–the most painful one I’ve had since entering the shelter system–but unlike Bronx Park Avenue, this shelter doesn’t have a big basement with a huge stack of mattresses. People who think I would choose to stay in this b.s. if I had other options are clearly mentally ill. I had another mental health examination on Friday and got the diagnosis “adjustment disorder,” which basically means that I’m under duress because of my job and living situation. It’s a mental illness in the way that a cold is a physical illness–the symptoms will go away when I’m in the right environment. The causes consistently go unpunished and unchecked. As established, the problem is the right-wingers cutting taxes on the rich, which destroys the middle class from which I came.

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