City Commissioners meet with Frenchtown residents

City Commissioners meet with Frenchtown residents
Posted at 6:02 PM, Mar 28, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-09 05:18:39-04

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Community members in Frenchtown got the opportunity to have their voices heard. They gathered for a public forum at Blue Collar Restaurant with city commissioners Andrew Gillum and Gil Ziffer.

It’s called “City Commissioners About Town,” a series of meetings taking place once each month at a different location throughout Tallahassee. On Mar. 28, dozens of residents in Frenchtown showed up. They voiced concerns about crime, prostitution and drugs.

Minnie Forrd is a Frenchtown resident who believes change needs to happen soon.

“A lot of the issues are concerning our youth and also the elderly and especially around the districts of Tallahassee,” Forrd said.

One major topic of discussion was the question of whether The Shelter on Tennessee Street should move to a new location. After allegations of poor conditions and mistreatment at The Shelter surfaced last month, board members are looking for a solution.

But Frenchtown residents say The Shelter has always caused problems for them, and they are ready to see it move to another area now more than ever.

“The Shelter has really served its purpose and a lot of conditions need to be met in order for there to be a change,” Forrd said.

City Commissioner Gil Ziffer agrees. He said, “This emergency shelter is serving more than just those who have emergency needs, and what we're working towards now is finding a different location, at least we are thinking about finding a different location, where we can better satisfy all those needs of the homeless community. This current building can't do that.”

Commissioners Gillum and Ziffer assured residents their comments would be relayed to board members at The Shelter and that something will be done.

“A general feeling is that this is a really strong community,” Ziffer said, “and they want to do more, and they want the city to do more, and they want to help improve the area."

To let your city commissioners know what you think, go to