We are brought up to believe in helping those less fortunate than ourselves, and that when we can't offer people money, the next best thing is time and sharing what we can. But it seems that it isn't that easy anymore, at least for one generous man in Chicago.
Greg Schiller is a resident of the 'Windy City,' and he noticed that when the temperature dropped below freezing, there were still people wandering out in the cold. He found out that there were times when local shelters weren't available to handle the demand for their services, and knew he couldn't just sit back.
"Somebody's going to die," said Schiller. So he did what his heart told him, and opened up his doors to these people.
He started offering up his garage for people to at least be sheltered from the winds, but when a man required medical attention from a preexisting heart condition, he was told to stop.
But he decided to ignore their request, and instead invited his guests into the house proper, and this is when the city amped up their threats.
Schiller began not only offering space to the homeless individuals he let into his house, but started including activities for them like watching movies. This would allow him to prove that he wasn't looking to compete with the city, and classify it as a "slumber party."
A spokesperson for the municipal government said that they appreciated the thought towards the community, but disagreed with his classification.
"While we appreciate those who volunteer to provide additional resources in the community, Mr. Schiller's house does not comply with codes and regulations that guard against potential dangers such as carbon monoxide poisoning, inadequate light and ventilation, and insufficient exits in the event of a fire," they explained.
They then gave him 24 hours to cease and desist or else risk having the house be condemned.
Schiller obeyed their request, but still worries about the homeless people in his area.
“I’m trying to help these people get out of the cold,” he says. “There’s not a lot of help for them as far as places to lay their heads.”