Mr. Fry's recent letter (The Daily News, June 19) made an important point: A substantial part of Cowlitz County's homeless population is homeless by choice. Some years ago, the local head of the Salvation Army told the Kelso Rotary club that 80–90% of the homeless here are voluntarily on the streets because they would not meet the drug-free requirement for housing assistance. When another Salvation Army officer later spoke to the same club I asked him if those figures were accurate. He answered that he could not confirm the percentages but that his organization could not fill the beds in their rehab center in Vancouver. I do not mean to disparage those who would use help if it was available, but this puts a different light on the homeless problem.

William Dennis


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