Minneapolis recently established a hoarding task force. Its estimated that approximately 10,000 people in Minnesota suffer from hoarding issues. There wasn't much information about this new group other then they were going to hold community events and help those with hoarding issues. I look forward to seeing how its run and the effects on the community.
So Chicago, where is your hoarding task force? Rahm, add it to your list of things to do. Hoarding poses risks for everyone.
In the last two years, my business dealing with clients who have hoarding issues has more than doubled. Due to the two TV shows, Hoarding: Buried Alive (on TLC) and Hoarders (on lifetime), hoarding is now out in the open. I recently filmed one of these TV shows. Its 100% real life!
So what risks does hoarding have to ones neighborhood?
1. Fire Hazards- Alot of these homes are fire hazards due to the amount of paper that they contain.
2. Infestations- With excessive amounts of trash come infestations of bugs, and mice.
3. Feces- Animal hoarders collect animals. They generally have too many animals to care for and don't clean up after them.
4. Odor- Years of trash ahd debris accumulation can cause some serious stinkage. I recently worked in a home that had a serious odor. I opened the doors to air it out and stunk up the whole street. It was so bad that one neighbor came over and complained.
If you live in a single family home, then you have a little space in between properties and might not have that bad of an effect. About 7 years ago, I lived next to a couple with hoarding issues. My apartment became infested with roaches. I was beyond mortified. Luckily, my building manager acted quickly and the problem was resolved.
So cudos to you Minnesota! I hope Chicago is next!