PORTLAND, Oregon (KOIN) – The Blanchett House, a Portland nonprofit that was plagued by broken windows in 2022, was hit again during breakfast service on Thursday morning. With all the windows broken, there are thousands more dollars that could be used to feed some of Portland’s most vulnerable population.
Scott Carman, Executive Director of Blanchett House, said: “People are really hostile and agitated.”
In an area of heightened tension, Carman says things came to a head on Thursday morning as someone in the breakfast service got upset and threw a brick through a glass door.
“There are a lot of bricks on the sidewalks here in Old Town, and he took one and threw it through the door window and smashed it,” says Kerman. “This year he probably broke more than 10 windows, which is a big deal for us.”
The nonprofit provides everything from meals to shelter to housing programs in Portland, and these costly repairs deprive it of critical funds to serve those most in need. It states that
“We probably spent 15,000 to 20,000 meals worth fixing the windows,” says Kerman.
Kerman added that while it was irritating for some people there that they were afraid of breaking windows during the meal service, it wouldn’t stop them from showing compassion to those in charge.
“We understand the trauma that leads people to often lose their homes. I understand it’s been going on for a long time,” Carman said. “We don’t judge people by how they behave or how they appear, we just consider what drives their anger and hostility.”
Carman believes the growing tension in the Old Town is the result of a combination of everything from weather and camp clearings to mental illness and drug use, and he hopes these services can continue. In the meantime, I hope local governments will step in and support non-profit organizations like Blanchett House.
“It’s really causing anxiety for the people we serve and will only increase tensions in the district,” Carman said.
The Blanchett House says repairs to the door will likely cost more than $2,000 starting Thursday morning, with other window repairs costing as much as $3,000.