Homeless, Mentally Ill and Christmas - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Homeless, Mentally Ill and Christmas

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ALBANY, GA (WALB) -

Christmas is less than two weeks away.Many of you are preparing holiday meals and decorating your houses.

Have you ever stopped to think what happens to the homeless on the holidays? Christmas and all the other holidays are just another day of struggle and survival for the homeless.

430 West Oglethorpe is the future site to Carmichael's Detail and Barbershop. It's almost a dream come true for owner Andrea Carmichael.

The only problem is, it's also home to a homeless woman.

"Since we've been here, we see the lady sitting on the side," said Carmichael.

"I just call her my friend," said Arnold.

Carmichael says the homeless woman sleeps, eats and uses the bathroom on her property. The woman has refused all help.

"On a daily basis she talks to herself," said Carmichael. 

"One minute she's okay and the next says no I don't need any help," said Velvet Riggins.

"I was trying to put her in the Rescue Mission but she didn't want to go. She had some things going on," said Arnold.

Business Owner Carl Arnold and School Board Member Velvet Riggins are two of several people who feed the woman on a daily basis.

"I either bring her money or coffee in the morning. I try to make sure she's alright," said Arnold.

"So outside of feeding her she needs medical help," said Carmichael.

Mental health agencies say family or police can check someone in for an evaluation. 

"I'm working hard trying to find somebody to help her. I don't want her put behind bars. No, and I'm not going to call police," said Carmichael. 

While you're opening Christmas Gifts, my friend won't. She'll be here, until help arrives. We offered her a chance to speak and she declined.

The owner of the business is trying to find the woman a new home.

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