Most people in Reno are surprised to hear there is still a Tent City on Record Street near the homeless shelter, says Cindy Radley, otherwise known as Dr. Mom. Radley, 49, has lived in Tent City for 10 months and considers herself a native. She’s acting as my guide today.
She recalls the day Reno Mayor Bob Cashell came out to visit and saw people sleeping on the train tracks and ordered Tent City reopened for the overflow from the homeless shelter complex.
Dr. Mom is a community leader in Tent City. She knows how to get around. She knows where and when to get blankets, food and the meager medical supplies that are available. She’s got the line on where to get tents. You could say she knows the ropes.
She’s got detractors. Some people would say the only reason she meets people at the gate is to see what they can do for her, and the only thing “Dr. Mom” really knows is how to work the system to her advantage.