LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Where do we belong in a Christian community?

I have been following the story about the church that is trying to get a shelter started in West Rehoboth for the homeless, with great interest. The church has the funds to build a home, or purchase an existing structure for such use.

I have read how the Sussex County Planning and Zoning Commission has voted to deny the church this choice many times. I am also a “frequent flyer” on the DART bus system, since my car broke down two years ago.

The Route 206 [bus] travels from the Boardwalk on Rehoboth Avenue and passes across Del. 1 [Coastal Highway] up Savannah Road [U.S. 9, Lewes] all the way up to Second Street, where it then goes back down Savannah Road towards Georgetown.

In my travels, gazing out the window on the Route 206 bus, I can’t help but see the abundance of stores, pharmacies, outlets and restaurants in this three-mile radius. There are many new housing developments and convenience stores, as well as entertainment centers, that are also found along Del. 24 [John J. Williams Highway] towards the Long Neck area.

My family and I vacationed in both Rehoboth Beach and Lewes several times over the years, and we have many wonderful memories. I am also a Christian and wonder why this community cannot help make room for a shelter for 22 people of the approximately 100 homeless people in the county. The heritage of the town of Rehoboth Beach is deep in Christian followers. Have you read the historical marker at the top of Rehoboth Avenue and the Boardwalk that records this?

Delaware has an “at will” policy on employment that puts hard-working citizens at risk of losing their jobs for no valid reason. I know firsthand because I bought a house in 2000 and in 2002 lost my job and my home because of this policy, and then, in 2006, I found a full-time job in April, and rented an apartment for me and my family, and lost my job one month later, because of this policy.

The main focus on the homeless is to “get a job!” Three times in 14 years, “at will” indirectly created homelessness for me and my family. So, you can see that getting a job shouldn’t be the main focus for the homeless — it should be protection on the job.

New Castle and Kent counties have public transportation on the weekends all year round. Sussex County only has it three months out of 12, which would limit job opportunities, getting to church events, concerts and the beach resort area.

I have talked with many people who are in need of disability income, and they are more than frustrated with the time it takes to be approved and receive it, because they get behind in their rent and mortgage payments and end up losing their homes.

Delaware has many great wonders — including beautiful farmlands that give us great crops of corn, tomatoes, fruit and even soybeans. We have several good chicken plants here in Sussex County — I know because my family eats lots of chicken. We have scrapple factories and peach festivals and parades all over this tiny state, and I have attended many of them.

I have worked in Delaware at many medical facilities and I have lots of knowledge and experience. I have been attending college here to be a nurse. I have volunteered for Hope Dining Room, Code Purple and both God’s Way and New Life thrift stores. I believe in serving God and my community. I am a female, age 57, and I am homeless.

Susan May Duck
Nassau

EDITOR’S NOTE: Weekend DART bus service in Kent County is Saturdays only.

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