Phoenix restaurant owner calls the Zone cleanup in his area ‘wonderful’

Jul 30, 2023, 9:48 AM

(Facebook Photo/Old Station Subs)...

(Facebook Photo/Old Station Subs)

(Facebook Photo/Old Station Subs)

PHOENIX — The latest effort to clean up the homeless encampment known as the Zone in downtown Phoenix had a direct impact on a familiar voice to those who listen to KTAR 92.3 FM.

“I guess being on so much and having so much media on my restaurant, they finally cleaned up my street, which is wonderful,” Old Station Subs Shop owner Joe Faillace told The Mike Broomhead Show on Thursday.

For Faillace, months of bitterness are starting to evaporate as change appears to be on the horizon for him and his neighbors.

“A lot of the women have been telling me they feel a lot safer and they’re just happy to come back in,” Faillace said. “I’m happy they are starting to clean it up.”

The cleanup effort has been slow and steady with thousands of people lining the streets and sidewalks, sleeping in tents and makeshift shelters.

Director of Phoenix’s Office of Homeless Solutions Rachel Milne told The Mike Broomhead Show on Wednesday that by the end of next week the effort will have cleaned up six total blocks.

Milne said that 184 individuals have been offered help to find indoor spaces and just 37 people have denied the complimentary service.

“The amount of people that came down to clean up just 20 tents was enormous,” Faillace said. “There must have been 20 cars, there must have been 60 people to help these people get off the streets. The money they are spending is phenomenal.”

Faillace said it’s apparent that mental illness is impacting the decisions that lead these people to their current situations and he was impressed to see the effort authorities took to provide care for those in need of service for mental health issues.

“I’m also happy for the homeless where I think they are going to be moving them to a stable place where they can get water facilities and help for the mental illness and the drugs,” Faillace said. “It’s an issue that definitely needs to be addressed in our neighborhood and I think everyone realizes it all over the city.”

Many places around the Valley offer services for the homeless such as Maggie’s Place that provides services to homeless pregnant women, Shoebox Ministry which provides toiletry items for those who can’t afford them and St. Joseph the Worker which helps transition people to quality jobs throughout the Valley.

More of these places can be found on our KTAR resource page here.

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Phoenix restaurant owner calls the Zone cleanup in his area ‘wonderful’