1.21.2005

Housing the Homeless: Spend Less, Do More

From Asheville's Brian Postelle in the Mountain Xpress:

"A plan to get homeless people off the streets and into housing – with no strings attached – got the green light from City Council at its Jan. 11 formal session.

Based on a "housing first" model developed and promoted by national nonprofits dealing with the homeless, the local plan is part of a federal initiative for ending homelessness in America within 10 years."

For those of you wondering where the progressives are, here's some. Asheville, NC has been coming up with different ways to address homelessness. Someone recognized that the city and county are spending oodles of dollars towards programs with only erratic success. So they're trying a novel approach - House the Homeless.

From the Asheville Daily Planet (sorry, no link): "the annual cost of taking care of 37 chronic homeless individuals in the city would be reduced from the present $22,700 per person to $16,000".

Mountain Xpress: "other steps include developing infrastructure to track those in the program, targeting people at high risk of homelessness (such as those leaving prisons or mental-health facilities), and coordinating complementary support services (such as treatment programs) once clients are off the streets."

Daily Planet: "After they are settled in housing, the homeless persons would be eligible for wrap-around support services to help them deal with health and addiction problems".

HUD is helping to support programs like this one, and though it'll make wingnuts' heads explode, it looks like the most affordable, most compassionate, most effective way of directly addressing the homelessness problem in America.

I love this town.
....................................
The P! Editorial Team is currently working on our vision statement. Please help us with your comments here: Open Thread: Help Us Identify Populist, Progressive Principles. Thank you.