Letter of the Day (Feb. 6): Downtown library

  • Updated: February 5, 2013 - 6:38 PM

Don't assume that homeless have no business in library.

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Library.

Photo: David Brewster, Star Tribune

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In response to "Security getting tough at downtown library" (Feb. 5): Last week alone, I spoke to three people experiencing homelessness who mentioned that they'd been to the downtown Minneapolis library that day.

The first, an architect with a master's degree who hit hard times, was there doing research to see how he might be able to advocate for a change in homeless shelter zoning laws.

The second, a science teacher for many years but now suffering from a debilitating chronic illness and waiting for an official diagnosis so he can pursue disability, was reading up on woodworking patterns to see if he could parlay some of his talent into income.

The third, a former commercial fisherman who has lived in a shelter while saving money from his job to pay a lawyer to get custody of his son, brought said son there to get some books.

Has anyone considered the fact that many homeless people are going to the library to actually use its services, or do we wrongly assume that they are not smart or motivated enough for that?

CATHY HEYING, MINNEAPOLIS

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