There is nothing new under the sun…turn, turn, turn

A homeless shelter that costs two dollars for two hours. Slightly bumpy.

When you’re homeless, you not only need to worry about a place to stay, but you also need to ascertain whether this place is safe. Some of the homeless in the Silicon Valley area have hit upon an innovative solution.

[R]iders can start at the Eastridge Transit Center and travel for two-plus hours to the end point at the Palo Alto Transit Center. There, they wait for a return bus, and then maybe make the round trip again.

And despite the fact that some (including some commenters) are uncomfortable with having “those people” on the buses, the (Santa Clara) Valley Transportation Authority points out that this is perfectly legal.

“We serve the public, and that includes anybody who has the need for transportation and has the ability to pay,” said Greta Helm, the VTA’s chief external affairs officer. “If people present a valid fare, there’s no reason to dispute them boarding.”

Some of the nay-sayers are very uncomfortable with the fact that two of “those people” are a father and his 10 year old daughter.

The father was uncomfortable revealing details about their lives. But he did say that he’s 40, has been unemployed and that he and his daughter, who is in fifth grade, are on a family shelter waiting list.

“She’s managing, much better than I ever expected,” the father said after waking her as the bus reached Eastridge at about 1:45 a.m. “I have no idea how she’s doing it. This is one of her best years so far in school.”

One of the commenters said that the daughter should be taken from the father and placed into child protective services, and another asked what type of a role model the father was.

Frankly, I think he’s an excellent role model. He’s providing for his daughter as best he can.

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