Friday, February 03, 2012
Homeless shelters, hotels, and college dorms are among the Portland beds hard-hit by an ongoing bedbug infestation.
Bedbugs remain a stigma here, in contrast to places like New York where they’ve long been ensconced. That keeps people and businesses from reporting or acknowledging the problem – making it difficult to track the growth of Portland’s bedbug population and determine if and where we’re making headway.
Homeless shelters and other low-income housing providers stepped up first in Portland, when bedbug sightings grew more common during the past few years. Home Forward (formerly the Housing Authority of Portland) built a “warming room” to kill bedbugs in homeless peoples’ luggage and possession before they could move into the new Bud Clark Commons apartments in Old Town. Central City Concern even developed its own bedbug-resistant bed and made it available to others.
But experts say anti-bedbug efforts in other sectors have lagged or been less effective, including those of the hotel industry and purveyors of secondhand furniture. Portlanders working on the front lines say it would be better if all affected parties, including TriMet, movie theaters and the hotel industry, participated in community-wide efforts.
Read more at The Portland Tribune.