Wilmington mayor: We must be proactive addressing homelessness

A ‘public health, safety concern’

By John Hamilton - jhamilton@wnewsj.com



WILMINGTON — A proactive approach from the city is how Mayor John Stanforth believes they’ll be able to address homelessness in Wilmington.

At Thursday’s Wilmington City Council meeting, Mayor John Stanforth wanted to get a discussion going about the homeless issue in Wilmington.

The motivation for the discussion came after Stanforth talked with Clinton County Commissioner Mike McCarty and read the September 2019 report from the Council on Economic Development.

“Initially the issue presented itself as a nuisance, but it has grown into a public health issue and a public safety concern,” said Stanforth.

He told council he had already begun having meetings with city and county leaders looking at the research surrounding it.

“It is an incredible topic once you get into it,” he said.

Citing information from the Wilmington Police Department, Wilmington has approximately 387 individuals with “at-large” addresses. Stanforth suspected the actual number of homeless was larger than that.

He told council that as ideals and strategies combating the issue develop, he would share it with them.

“I expect that I will need your help and approval for implementing these strategies,” he said. “We all need to work together to reduce the number of people without shelter. We need law enforcement, we need non-profit executives involved as well.

“This plan is evolving, it’s moving forward,” he added.

Also during council:

• City Auditor David Hollingsworth shared with council that Wilmington has received the State of Ohio Auditor’s Award of Excellence for the fifth year in a row. The award is presented for excellence in financial reporting for the year. Hollingsworth gave credit to the Auditor’s office staff and feels confident they’ll continue the good work after he leaves the position at the end of the year.


A ‘public health, safety concern’

By John Hamilton


Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574

Reach John Hamilton at 937-382-2574