News articles

James Shearer: fight to the finish

There was a hill right next to the school for wayward boys, where James Shearer attended classes as a teenager, and he used to race a classmate up and down the hill when there was nothing else to do. There was often nothing else to do, and James was in good shape, but he never

Bringing harm reduction out of the shadows

With the War on Drugs widely seen as a failure, Katie Hyslop investigates how activists and governments in the United States and Canada are beginning to use harm reduction policies in order to help keep addicts alive. Hundreds of doctors, politicians, researchers and frontline workers will get together with drug users and ex-users in Austin,

Project 50/50: Streets of Savannah Part II

The Alamo is only 2 blocks up from the Quick Stop, but it looks like it should be abandoned. We pulled into the space in front of door 201, and I told myself not to be nervous about parking the truck there. Michael’s brother cracked the door so he could see us before he opened

Families in need

In 2006, my family was living on the financial edge. With no safety net, we existed week to week and the rent that we owed was increasing dramatically. No matter how hard my husband and I searched, the job market was just not producing for us, until eventually, in February of 2006, we were forced

Homeless again

I really don’t like putting my personal life on display, but I am, to show how suddenly even the s o – c a l l e d mighty can fall. For me the holidays sucked. Right around Christmas my partner of 11 years and I split. I won’t bore you with details, just know

Project 50/50: Savannah Streets

“Do you smoke crack?” he asked me as he lifted himself onto his toes to inspect the inside of my truck from the other side of the passenger door. I was shocked by the assertive tone he used when asking the question. I looked around and then at Michael, hoping that someone would explain. Michael

Fashion Show For The Homeless

The estimated number of homeless children in Pennsylvania exceeds 40,000. The Homeless Education Found, a nonprofit organization focused on the goal of giving homeless children equal educational opportunities, is now being aided by fashion. At the Pittsburgh Playwrites Theatre on the 28th and 29th of January, Model and Talent National’s Project Evolution held the fashion

Bitter Fruit

In the last issue of Spare Change News I wrote a story about Dominic Cinelli, an inmate that I knew, who became a cop killer after his parole in 2009. Dominic was killed during the shoot-out. That’s the name of the game; I don’t have a problem with that. What I do have a problem

In The Line Of Fire

I knew Dominic Cinelli. You must have read his name at least a dozen times since Christmas weekend. He’s the guy who killed John “Jack” Macguire, a Woburn police officer, age 60, a good cop. I never thought I’d feel sorry for a police officer, but my heart goes out to Officer Macguire and his