Brown Co. Library's Plan to Curb Homeless Problems
Photo: Video by nbc26.com
GREEN BAY- The Brown County Library has been receiving complaints for a while now about homeless people drinking or loitering outside the front door and now they're making changes one step at a time.
"It's a great idea. I mean right now people just kind of linger here anyways," said Katrina Fibiger. Fibiger frequently visits the library and sits in the plaza outside, but she admits that sometimes she doesn't feel safe.
"When I do come over here to do the yoga classes I usually walk through a big cloud of smoke and that's never pleasant," said Fibiger.
Besides heavy smoking there are problems with people drinking and panhandling outside the library. Now, police are stepping in giving the library a flashlight, that can also detect your blood alcohol level.
If they have a suspicion of somebody having alcohol they can hold it by that person and hold a conversation and that device should tell them whether that person has alcohol in their system or not," said Green Bay's police captain Jim Runge.
The plaza is where many people come outside to read, but not it is scheduled for demolition. It's going to be made into a children's vegetable garden to help minimize the number of problems at the library.
"It gives us a way for us to teach and children to learn about where food comes from." said Lynn Stainbrook, the Director of the Brown County Library.
The garden is something Fibiger says will be better for everyone.
"I think that's a fantastic idea and gives kids on hand experience. I don't see why flowers and vegetables wouldn't look prettier than concrete," said Fibiger.
The library has already seen a huge amount of support for the children's garden. They've received $25,000 of the $35,000 needed to make this project a reality.