Tom, homeless, sits outside of a local gas station in Quincy, Sunday evening, Jan., 13, 2109. He said, after being asked to leave a Quincy emergency shelter for quarreling with a roommate, he sought refuge at another shelter in town. Tom said, after being allowed to stay on a couch there one night, the board of directors decided he couldn’t stay there because of “liability concerns” related to the seizures he suffers.
“I was keeping something going until just the other day, but as of today I’m homeless. At age 8, I was a ward of the State of Missouri. My mom didn’t want her kids. I have no family. I can’t work while applying for Social Security insurance, because of the seizures. It’s a catch-22. I’ve filed for SSI, but haven’t been approved yet, and I can’t work, while applying,” Tom said. “At age 50, I never thought I’d be living outside.”
Tom isn’t the only homeless person in Quincy trying to do the best they can without appropriate shelter. There is a network of various “hides” around town for those left in the cold. Many are successful in finding friends to stay with in freezing weather, but not all. There aren’t many options in Quincy for emergency shelter. It’s often a crap shoot as to who manages to get out of the cold and who doesn’t.