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Eskenazi employee works to make stab proof security blankets for unhoused Hoosiers

Posted at 11:02 PM, May 30, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS — With every stitch Phillip Campbell is working to provide security blankets for Indy's unhoused.

"When it comes to quilting, I have to use a three inch needle and a pair of pliers to get through it," said Campbell.

The blankets, he says, are stab proof and waterproof.


"There's two layers of stab proof Kevlar inside, so they'll resist against animal bites as well as sharps attack," he said.

By day, Campbell is a supervisor for project point in the Eskenazi emergency department, providing care and resources to those who come in from an overdose or battling addiction.

"Many times, our team is the first glimpse of sobriety that those people have ever seen because there's generations of substance use," said Campbell. "And many of our patients that come in are experiencing homelessness to some degree."

He's also an artist who found inspiration through his hospital career and self-journey.

"So May 1, I was 15-years sober myself. So, this is a way of giving back," said Campbell.


Campbell's first round of blankets were given to those in need at the Horizon House.

He's hoping to receive grant funding to start mass production.

"I think that's a good thing — stab proof. Frankly, we don't have to worry, like last night I was asleep and somebody snatched my bag. It's crazy stuff that's been going on. We can get no justice, I guess because we're homeless," said Shawna Dunlap.

Dunlap knows what's it like to sleep on the street, worried about her safety.

"It's been rough, really rough," said Dunlap.

Data from the Marion County Coroner's Office shows that there were 121 deaths of homeless last year. Blunt force trauma and drug intoxication ranked the highest for those deaths; homicides followed.


Dunlap, along with Gloria Collazo, are thankful for people like Campbell.

"There ain't nothing more that you can say because he's taking his time to come out here and do it for us. We don't have too many people that do that. So, I tell him, thank you, and I appreciate it, if not from everybody else, just for me," said Collazo.

"Well, thank you for making the blankets and try to hurry up and get some more out here to keep us safe," said Dunlap.