Lake Orion council pledges statement of support for homeless man

Bruce Gertz has been subject of controversy as homeless resident

By Keith Dunlap - Graham Media Group

Bruce Gertz has been a homeless resident in Lake Orion for the past 19 years. Keith Dunlap/GMG

LAKE ORION, Mich. - During a Monday meeting, the Lake Orion Village Council plans to read a statement of support for a homeless man who has lived in the area for nearly 20 years, according to a Facebook page dedicated to the man. 

The Bruce of Orion Facebook page posted Friday that Lake Orion Police Chief Jerry Narsh and the Village Council have been discussing how to assist 65-year-old Bruce Gertz, who has been living as a homeless resident in the town for the past 19 years, by getting Social Security benefits for him and a place to stay at night and during the winter. 

 

Last month, the council said it was going to have a discussion about possibly relocating Gertz, who has lived on various benches and street corners in the community. 

The possible relocation sparked heated debate in the community from those on both sides of the issue. 

Those supporting Gertz say he's a good-natured man who hasn't bothered anyone in the community during his time on the streets, but others are worried that his presence portrays a negative image and could lead to other homeless people moving in. 

The council said the only action it would take regarding Gertz on Monday is reading a statement of support for him and his freedom to choose his way of life, according to the Facebook page. 

Anyone is free to attend the meeting to hear the announcement or ask questions.

The page said Gertz approves of the plan. 
 

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