PHOTOS/EDITS BY RUTH RADER
From an email that I sent out today:
I am sitting here today and considering what my options will be tomorrow. And they're all wrong.
There comes a time when a person decides that enough is enough. I am at that point now.
As far as I'm concerned, the State of Oregon should have intervened in my case
a long time ago. I am fed up with the system refusing to hear my voice. I believe that the negligence that has been handed to me should be considered elder abuse. I believe that enduring what I have without an officially caring soul to turn to has been and is now...disgraceful. I further believe that it is high time that someone from the State of Oregon sits down with me and examines my life situation,
piece by piece. I believe that since the State of Oregon is providing benefits to me
then it should also be making sure that every resource is being used to its full
I will no longer be silent.
Recently, I sat down with a State fraud investigator and we discussed what
happened to me when some people tried to move me into a so-called
"assisted living" situation. The whole ordeal was a terrible farce and resulted in me leaving that house, filing a formal complaint with the State and a subsequent investigation.
When the dust cleared, I was back out on the street. Literally.
Recently, I spent a week in the Willamette Valley Medical Center in McMinnville.
I was under the care of a cardiologist who did his best to identify and compile
what is physically wrong with me. But on the day that I was released, no one
was there to offer me even a place to stay that night.
I have a problem with my heart. My condition becomes obvious when I get
winded and can't catch my breath. My congestive heart failure, pulmonary edema and chronic high blood pressure have put me in a vulnerable position. I
struggle with it every day. It has become a very wearying battle.
Tonight I will have a roof over my head. Tomorrow I will have to leave. That means that I will have to walk out into the high wind and the cold rain and put
my thumb out. I will have to hitchhike to Newport because I won't have the money to ride a bus.
I am 60 years old and in desperate need of affordable housing, legal representation and continuing medical care.
I don't believe for one second that just because I am female, originally from
another State and homeless that I should be walking down this blind path...
If I have to sit on the steps of a State building with a sign, this situation is going
to change. What is happening to me is unfair. Now you know that, too.