Our Voices

Tragedy

Last Friday, tragedy struck our Hollywood community.

A man who we know well, and greatly care about, allegedly, violently, attacked a woman outside of her property.

We mourn for the woman who was attacked.
We mourn for violence in our community.
We mourn for the man who we care deeply for.

But why did it have to come to this?

I met this man a year ago in Hollywood. He was clearly wrestling with different issues, but was always a pleasure to talk to. He would sit on Gower sketching away in his notebook. I would say hello and be greeted with a “Hiya Lady” in return. He became very dear to me.

Over the past year, members of the Hollywood community and myself have watched this man’s mental and physical health plummet. Over the past few months, it was not uncommon to find him wandering through traffic, seemingly unaware of everything going on around him. We so badly wanted to help him get to a better place.

And we tried. Oh we tried. We tried connecting him to mental health treatment. We tried housing options. We tried calling the police. We tried getting him conserved.

Nothing stuck.

What were we supposed to?

What do we do when we see a community member in need?

What do we do when we see someone who presents as a threat to themselves and to others, but current practice and policy to not provide him (or us) the proper care and treatment that he deserves? We want to keep fighting, advocating for this man and others who may follow suite, but where are our resources?

We mourn for the woman who was attacked.
We mourn for violence in our community.
We mourn for the man who we care deeply for.

We struggle today, but we continue our work in hope that we can bring real change to everyone in our community.

Editor for The CenterTragedy