Answer Line: Yes, Longview police has homeless outreach team
Jo Lee Ferguson wishes she kept her maiden name - Hammer - because it was perfect for a reporter. She’s a local girl who loves writing about her hometown. She and LNJ Managing Editor Randy Ferguson have two children and a crazy husky.
Jo Lee Ferguson
QUESTION: Does Longview still have two officers assigned to deal with homeless people? There is someone living right off Green Street just north of Highway 80 under trees on an empty lot with trash everywhere.
ANSWER: Yes, the Longview Police Department does still have a Police Outreach Services Team dedicated to addressing homelessness-related issues in the city.
Officer Ronald Duncan has worked in this capacity since the positions were created in 2018. Officer Christopher Byrdsong is the second member of the team.
The city's website says their duties are to: "respond to homeless related calls for service; assist homeless in making appointments and connecting with community resources; perform checks at homeless shelters; create community partnerships with non-profits and local businesses; educate the community on the Police Outreach Services Team; conduct outreach and refer homeless to services."
Duncan, by the way, has worked in law enforcement for more than 30 years in a whole bunch of different roles. Byrdsong started working for the Longview Police Department in 2004, and he once was a unit manager with the former Meadow Pines Hospital, which specialized in helping people dealing with mental health issues. He also has a mental health peace officers certification.
Duncan's and Byrdsong's office is at the Historic Train Depot on Pacific Avenue at Mobberly Avenue and Cotton Street. You can reach Duncan at (903) 331-1870 and Byrdsong at (903) 331-1979.
Q: Are there any recycle drop-off sites for plastic water bottles or jugs in Longview?
A: Yes, there is. If you're a Longview resident who lives in an apartment or somewhere else that doesn't have access to the city's blue-lid barrel for recycling, you can take No. 1 and No. 2 plastics to the city's compost site at 2020 Swinging Bridge Road. (Actually, you can take all of your recyclable materials there, including glass.) It's open 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
— Answer Line appears Wednesday and in the Weekend edition. Email questions to [email protected], leave a message at (903) 232-7208 or write to P.O. Box 1792, Longview, TX 75606.
Jo Lee Ferguson
Jo Lee Ferguson wishes she kept her maiden name - Hammer - because it was perfect for a reporter. She’s a local girl who loves writing about her hometown. She and LNJ Managing Editor Randy Ferguson have two children and a crazy husky.Jo Lee FergusonUESTION:Q:A:Jo Lee FergusonYou voted: