Miami PD Saving The Lives Of Homeless People
Miami, FL – As catastrophic Hurricane Irma comes barreling towards Florida, Miami PD isn’t giving the homeless a choice to stay outside and die in the storm; they’re cuffing them and dragging them in.
The Associated Press reports that Miami PD went out with a psychologist to track down homeless people sleeping at waterfront parks.
“We’re going out and every single homeless person who is unwilling to come off the street, we are likely going to involuntarily Baker Act them,” Ron Book, chairman of the Miami-Dade Homeless Trust, told Associated Press journalists.
“I am not going to sign suicide notes for people who are homeless in my community. I am just not going to do it. That’s why you have a Baker Act. It’s there to protect those who can’t otherwise protect themselves.”
The Baker Act is the law which allows law enforcement to take people into protective custody for a mental evaluation if they present a danger to themselves or others. Choosing to remain outside as the hurricane approaches certainly qualifies.
Miami PD has already had to take six people into custody who refused to go seek shelter. The law allows them to be held for up to 72 hours before the state can rule to prolong their detention.
“A person who has a history of mental illness and who is staying in harm’s way, and doesn’t have a logical cohesion of what is right or what is wrong at that point, is a harm to himself, and at that point we can Baker Act them for his own protection,” Dr. Mohammad Nisar said while he was out with officers.
Hurricane Irma is now expected to hit Florida as a Category 5 hurricane and presents a life-threatening danger to people in the whole state, making for another major catastrophe after Hurricane Harvey hit Texas and the western United States caught fire.
Hurricane Harvey has become the costliest natural disaster in our county’s history.