David Ross, known as "The Water Man” and as an advocate for homeless people in San Diego, appeared at the city-council meeting on Tuesday, September 14, with a shopping cart. His aim was to appeal to council members who can put a stop to an “orchestrated plan” that will take carts back from the homeless throughout the city.
Ross claims that the plan could take place in the next week or so and will put the shopping carts in the hands of a recycling company from Los Angeles and not returned to the supermarkets from which they were originally obtained.
“Please picture for a moment,” said Ross, “that you’re on the street and all your personal possessions are in this cart. Now, I don’t know how you ended up there — maybe you were sick, maybe you lost your job, your insurance — and they’re going to take the one thing that you have to transport the remaining things that you have in your life.”
Ross argued that the shopping carts will need repair and will make money for the recycling company, which is not based in San Diego.
“To use this [plan] as an implement to further kick people who are already down and out, practically — to take these baskets away…it is unconscionable and horribly inhumane to take the last thing that these people have,” he said.
According to Ross, he has 160 carts on the streets of San Diego called “Born Again Baskets,” which he purchased and anyone is free to use. Ross says that one cart costs $57.50, and he plans to raise more money in order to replace the shopping carts that are being taken away. His website: helpthewaterman.com.