“Viewpoint: The New York Newsday Interview with Mariana Leighton: Learning How the Other Half Lives”

NEW YORK NEWSDAY
Op-Ed, February 24, 1988, p. 57
“Viewpoint: The New York Newsday Interview with Mariana Leighton: Learning How the Other Half Lives”

[preview only]

Abstract (summary)

Q. What is the Martinique like as a living environment for children and families? A. The Martinique is a step up from a shelter. It is not a healthy environment for anybody. But it’s better than the street and it’s surely better than a shelter. The situation has deteriorated somewhat since crack has come into the picture. There seems to be a war going on between the crackies and the noncrackies.

Q. Are the children aware of this? A. I don’t think the children have a sense of this, but they each certainly have to have a sense that they’re living in a room with adults. There is no privacy. They don’t get the right amount of sleep. They don’t have any {daily} routines. There are no parks. These people are miserable. And they can’t help but be aggressive because they’re miserable. You can sort of tell in the morning by the tone of the kids what kind of night it’s been. Whether they’ve had any sleep or whether it’s been wild and woolly. And chaotic. It’s not a real safe place. The children cannot be given any freedom. Q. You came to the Martinique after working…

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