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Naples City Council denies request for additional accommodations for veterans at Alpha House

The battle for Naples City Council to allow more veterans into Alpha House is over for now after hours and hours of disputes and discussions. The Wounded Warriors of Collier County is now turning to the community to help homeless veterans.

“If the communities don’t come together and help these veterans, they will fail,” said Wounded Warrior of Collier County’s President Dale Mullin.

The organization wanted Naples City Council to allow more veterans into Alpha House. They wanted to help more people like they helped Mitch, a formerly homeless veteran who turned his life around.

“I’ve been able to get an apartment for myself, a car for myself, pay my bills, work on my relationship with my family and rebuild everything, rebuild my life so I have a bright future,” he said.

Mitch was able to leave Alpha House after just three months.

But some who reside in Riverpark East, where Alpha House is located say they just think fair is fair.

“Thank you, veterans. We do appreciate all that you have done and we don’t want to hurt you at all. But likewise, we should not hurt those residents who live there,” said one resident.

Naples City Council sided with the residents.

“I don’t think Riverpark alone should bear that burden,” another resident said.

They weren’t convinced by Alpha House’s arguments that allowing more veterans to live there would create more success for everyone living there.

“I think it misses on so many marks.”

Wounded Warriors of Collier County President Dale Mullin is very disappointed by City Council’s decision.

“It’s been an exhausting day for everybody, you just have to step back and decide where we go next,” Mullin said.

But Dale refuses to stop fighting for his fellow veterans in Collier County.

Alpha House says in the long run, they cannot cover their expenses with only four residents. But Mullin does say they have enough funds to make through the end of 2020.

Wounded Warriors of Collier County is a locally-based nonprofit founded in Naples and not related to the National Wounded Warriors Project.

Reporter:Rachel Cox-Rosen
Writer:Drew Hill
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