SAN DIEGO (NEWS 8) — WWE superstar Rey Mysterio is teaming up with a local nonprofit to help address homelessness in Barrio Logan.
With a controversial storage facility for the homeless set to open next to Our Lady's Elementary School, the wrestler challenged the students to come up with a plan to help end the homeless crisis.
Students at the school got a visit from Mysterio and Grammy-winner Frankie J - both San Diego natives
"We support what you have to say," Mysterio said to the children. "Your voice needs to be heard."
The visit was organized by the group Love Thy Neighbor to raise awareness about homelessness as concerns continue to grow about the homeless storage facility scheduled to open up next month just steps from campus.
"I walk the neighborhood pretty regularly," said Principal Noel Bishop. "I’ll see used syringes, used condoms, crack pipes. I've found just a variety of defecation, urination."
He says it’s a safety issue for students.
"I’m not sure a lot of thought was put into, 'hey, let’s check out the neighborhood and see what we’re putting this near," said Bishop.
In March, the City Council voted 8-1 in favor of opening the storage facility near 20th and Commercial streets in an effort to de-clutter streets and give the homeless a place to store their belongings while they search for permanent housing or go to school.
"It will give them the sense of security knowing their personal belongings are in a safe place," Mayor Kevin Faulconer told the City Council.
On Tuesday, students read essays on ways to help the homeless.
"I think it is in our community’s best interest to start placing the homeless where they can seek help for their issues," one student said.
Mysterio wants the city to listen to the folks in this neighborhood.
"When you don’t pay attention to the community and to the voice that all the kids in the school are vouching for, I think that becomes an issue," he said.
Principal Bishop says they’re now in the process of hiring a private security guard.
"We’re not anti-homeless," he said. "We would like to help them, but I just think the choice where they put this facility is the wrong choice."