Gregory Reese flew to Hawaii because he said he had job offers

Gregory Reese flew to Hawaii because he said he had job offers in construction and at a gym. But those gigs fell through. And with his father struggling with finances and lung cancer, the 39-year-old could no longer afford a ticket back to Seattle.Now two Hawaiian state legislators want to send him back home. But not everyone is happy with their plan.As the Honolulu Star-Advertiser

reports, State Reps. John Mizuno and Rida Cabanilla are pitching in their own money to buy Reese a one-way ticket back to the mainland.Mizuno and Cabanilla initially tried to get the state to fund a $100,000 pilot program to ship the non-native homeless back to where they came from, thus taking the burden off Hawaii’s already-stressed social services.When that plan fell through, the two lawmakers settled on the less ambitious and vaguely Maoist sounding “family reunification” program, with Reese as its charter member.Reese seems happy to return to the Emerald City. And his dad seems equally thrilled to be getting his son back. But John Fox, director of the Seattle Displacement Coalition, told the Star-Advertiser that the idea was “unbelievable.”Laura Lockard, spokeswoman for the Seattle City Council, followed up with a “that’s not how we do things here” quote: “We’re committed in Seattle to helping people find their path if they’re transient or homeless due to economic situations.”Yeah, but if their path is back to the place where they came from, and they don’t have the cash to get there, what’s wrong with someone offering them a free ticket? (H/T: Strange Bedfellows)


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