Homeless advocate says Kentucky legislators’ opinions on HB 5 may have been changed by lunch with homeless

Republished from WEKU.

A lunch shared by state lawmakers and homeless persons may alter the final version of House Bill 5. That’s according to Ginny Ramsey, director of Lexington’s Catholic Action Center. She said nearly half of the 138 members of the General Assembly attended last Wednesday’s luncheon in the capitol annex – and that she believes some of their minds were changed about portions of the “Safer Kentucky Act.”

“The legislators really participated. They were courageous. And not only coming and sharing the meal, but discussion. Our Street Voice Council folks were wonderful. They felt heard.”

Ramsey and other homeless advocates have criticized HB 5, which passed the state House January 25th, for criminalizing homelessness when there aren’t enough shelter beds in Kentucky.

“We already have laws that cover loitering, that cover of trespassing, the issues that House bill 5 is criminalizing, but also directing at those experiencing homelessness.”

Ginny Ramsey, director of Lexington’s Catholic Action Center, spoke to the media at the Capitol Wednesday. (The Lexington Times)

Results of a 2,000-respondent survey on Kentuckians’ attitudes towards the homeless that reflected those sentiments were also shared with the lawmakers.

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Originally published by WEKU.

Republished with permission.