SALT LAKE CITY -- Salt Lake City's homeless crisis was a major focus of Mayor Jackie Biskupski's State of the City address Tuesday evening.
Biskupski told a large crowd at the Marmalade library that there is a desperate need to help the homeless, and for that reason, she’s calling on the citizens of Salt Lake City to trust her.
“Salt Lake City has been a place of hope for those experiencing homelessness for 30 years. However, the current system of service—even with the tremendous efforts of dedicated individuals—is crushing that hope under a need too great for any one city to manage,” said Biskupski.
According to Biskupski, she would have done things differently with the homeless situation, but the city now has to move forward.
Some Salt Lake residents, however, don’t agree on plans to build four new homeless shelters around the city.
“We have a mayor who is just not listening. She's not listening to her constituents. She's not listening to her elected officials," said Mary Thompson of Salt Lake City. “I didn't vote for her but I still have expectations of elected officials, especially ones that run on a platform of transparency and caring about constituents.”
Salt Lake City resident John Begay agreed. According to Begay, Biskupski isn’t addressing the needs of those that don’t agree with her.
“There's nothing going in about what we want. It's more or less about what she wants,” said Begay.
One of Biskupski’s main goals, she said, is to do a better job communicating with the public that spurred from the homeless shelter site issues.
“We certainly should have done this differently. I understand that. I’m listening. I also understand this is a big decision,” said Biskupski.
The full speech can be read here.