Vicar Gayle Browne of St Luke’s Episcopal Church hosted the meeting. Photo by Vivian Shipe

By Vivian Shipe

KNOXVILLLE, TN — The panelists who came before the people at the first of five town hall meetings held at St Luke’s Episcopal Church, brought much needed information to the people of East Knoxville on affordable housing.

The goal of the town hall meetings are to show the different faces of those who need affordable housing and to let the people speak about what  they are experiencing and their needs.

Among those who came to share and answer questions vetted to them about difficulty getting housing were Alice Clarke, a grand parent raising her grandson,  Keira Wyatt with CONNECT Ministries, serving the street homeless and those recently released from jail and prison, and Ira Grimes with Keenan Grimes Outreach Center who works to help restore the lives of those addicted to opiods.

Representatives from Habitat for Humanity, Youth Villages and realtor/ broker Nikitia Thompson shared information on how those in attendance could get housing.

City officials Vice Mayor Finbarr Sanders and council member Gwen McKenzie were also in the audience to hear what the citizens of East Knoxville had to say.

The panelist and the faces of those who need affordable housing will change as the town halls move about the city.  The next meeting will be held in North Knoxville on November 9th at the Knoxville Senior Independent Living  Facility from 2 till 4 pm.