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Old 11-17-2014, 10:07 PM
 
4,367 posts, read 3,552,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
See, that's the problem. Barriers to entry keeps people out. Maximum residency duration with no permanent housing creates a revolving-door problem. Housing-first is based on addressing housing first, with no maximum time limit, and addressing issues like physical disabilities, mental illness and substance abuse after housing, because being housed makes those issues easier to treat.
With all due respect, I think the ones with serious psychological disorders should be in a hospital. We're not doing them any favors by letting them roam the streets when there are treatments available for their problems. Once they are stabilized, then they could come back and apply for temporary housing. Really, I was thinking more in terms of the working homeless. I suggested maximum residency duration and screening because I didn't envision anyone becoming a permanent resident of this kind of housing. Hopefully, eventually, the ones depending on it would find a good job and an apartment. After all, it's kind of difficult to put up with either very small rooms or over ten roommates, but it beats being on the streets.
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Old 11-17-2014, 11:01 PM
 
33,046 posts, read 22,062,610 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wburg View Post
Because creating that kind of housing costs a lot of money, and cities don't have enough money to build it. The large cities have other large problems, all of which are expensive to solve, and building housing for the homeless is politically unpopular, so it gets relatively little in terms of resources. Some cities do create low-income housing, often in conjunction with state and federal programs, and people scream about "welfare housing" in their neighborhood.

Many years ago, there was more housing for poor people, often in downtowns. That housing was destroyed, often given away to real estate and business interests to turn into new commercial centers, but the housing was generally not replaced. It was assumed that the people who lived there would just kind of vanish, or die off like an unwatered plant. But that's not what people do, so homelessness became a bigger and bigger problem in the United States. Many Americans assume that homeless people don't deserve any help, and don't really see them as human beings like them.

Cities have plenty of money, it's just that they spend it on other things, largely employee salaries and benefits. I think the only way to ensure money is spent on housing is to dedicate 1 percent of property tax increases to housing.
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Old 11-17-2014, 11:45 PM
 
Location: Myrtle Creek, Oregon
12,264 posts, read 12,507,549 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmb501 View Post
I was watching a documentary on homelessness in America recently, and now I have a few questions. Why can't cities create low rent or tax subsidized housing for the homeless? It seems like the cities have enough money to provide safe transitional opportunities for people who have a reasonable need. Is it feasible for large cities to do this? If they can do it, why don't they?
Because it's a mistake to give people anything they didn't earn. Cities used to build subsidized housing projects. They turned into the worst kind of slums within a very few years. Generally, all of the projects have been torn down after deteriorating past the point of livability.
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Old 11-18-2014, 12:01 AM
 
Location: bend oregon
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theres a lot of homeless that have tents but tents in some areas would be too cold. i dont know how homeless in places where it gets really cold like the east coast do it without a homeless shelter.
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Old 11-18-2014, 02:31 AM
 
Location: where you sip the tea of the breasts of the spinsters of Utica
8,301 posts, read 12,218,742 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Caldwell View Post
Because it's a mistake to give people anything they didn't earn. Cities used to build subsidized housing projects. They turned into the worst kind of slums within a very few years. Generally, all of the projects have been torn down after deteriorating past the point of livability.
There's still plenty of subsidized housing around, but it's not much in the old style of high-rise buildings, lacking good security and maintenance, concentrated in one place. If there weren't such housing, that many people would not be able to afford much of anything, and would add to the numbers of homeless. Let's not forget that most such housing isn't simply an option for supposedly lazy "thugs" to suck on the govt teat - it was originally meant for people like the disabled, homeless, and single-parent families that can't afford childcare while working. Unfortunately however many of the boyfriends (who aren't officially living there) and children do turn out to be criminals.

It's not free, it's usually set at one-third of income, which is reasonable, instead of spending almost all one's income on renting some shabby little privately-owned room.
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Old 11-18-2014, 04:42 AM
 
4,367 posts, read 3,552,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Caldwell View Post
Because it's a mistake to give people anything they didn't earn. Cities used to build subsidized housing projects. They turned into the worst kind of slums within a very few years. Generally, all of the projects have been torn down after deteriorating past the point of livability.
I agree with you one-hundred percent. That's why I recommended we have tight screenings (to discourage residents who participate in illegal activity and weed out people who could be dangerous) , in-house security, and a minimum duration of residency, let's say one year. After that, they have to find their own place. During the time, though, we could offer them job-finding advice, require them to attend small business seminars, partner with local businesses who hire the homeless as laborers, and provide budgeting and financial planning advice to meet their current situation. We could also collect information on local boarding houses and safe inexpensive apartments in the area to encourage residents to quickly get back on track. What I have in mind is strictly a temporary shelter, good to get out of the cold and rain but not a permanent solution and not intended to be such. I personally believe that providing a permanent solution for the homeless would not be cost-effective, nor would it be in the best interest of the working homeless. Permanent housing would only undermine the efforts they are already making and would reduce the effectiveness of this system as a transitional aid.

Last edited by krmb; 11-18-2014 at 05:03 AM..
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Old 11-18-2014, 05:40 AM
 
4,367 posts, read 3,552,007 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woof View Post
There's still plenty of subsidized housing around, but it's not much in the old style of high-rise buildings, lacking good security and maintenance, concentrated in one place. If there weren't such housing, that many people would not be able to afford much of anything, and would add to the numbers of homeless. Let's not forget that most such housing isn't simply an option for supposedly lazy "thugs" to suck on the govt teat - it was originally meant for people like the disabled, homeless, and single-parent families that can't afford childcare while working. Unfortunately however many of the boyfriends (who aren't officially living there) and children do turn out to be criminals.

It's not free, it's usually set at one-third of income, which is reasonable, instead of spending almost all one's income on renting some shabby little privately-owned room.
One-third of total income is a reasonable price, in my opinion, but these benefits should not be handed to people who will not help themselves. People on welfare should be treated as transitional, not allowed to stay in the projects indefinitely, and not be allowed to abuse the system instead of using it for its intended purpose. Every family who has children and is not making a decent effort to support them should be required to give them up to the state. Children who grow up in drug-ridden housing projects would be better off in a foster home. The parents should be required to find a more stable set of options and not be allowed to depend on the government to help raise them.

A woman in this country can stay pregnant and get support from the government just because she has children, whether she was originally able to support them or not. That support could go elsewhere, like to working parents who struggle to support their families and make ends meet or to working homeless who can't afford housing. I'm sick of hearing about people being rewarded for being lazy and irresponsible. It should be a crime! Chronic welfare recipients should at least be required to log a certain number of hours of productive work, even if it is unpaid, but I personally disagree with the whole system that allows a person to become a chronic welfare recipient in the first place. Non-working able-bodied families should also not receive tax breaks and huge refunds just for having children, either. Tax refunds should be given to those who put in hours doing productive work.

Last edited by krmb; 11-18-2014 at 05:54 AM..
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Old 11-18-2014, 08:38 AM
 
Location: Pittsburgh, PA (Morningside)
12,422 posts, read 11,929,235 times
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There are basically three kinds of homeless people.

1. People who are homeless, but normal - just down on their luck. Many of these people have jobs. They sleep in their car, or couch surf at friends and families. If they found affordable housing, they mostly would be able to make rent and pay their bills.

2. The crazy and/or those addicted to drugs (including alcohol). This is most of the people you see on the streets in northern cities with harsh winter climates (discounting some panhandlers - the ones with good hygiene often actually have somewhere to live). They should be in an institutional setting, but we don't allocate enough money to social services to ensure this.

3. The "homeless by choice" - including young gutter punks/crusties and older "survivalist" types who want to live off the grid. Generally people who are homeless by choice will migrate to the south or west coast - no one with a choice wants to live on the streets in a city with harsh winters. I do wonder how much gentrification is pushing these folks out of their traditional haunts though - walkable neighborhoods are ideal if you don't have a home or a car, but actual places to squat in many cities are becoming limited.
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Old 11-18-2014, 08:46 AM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
29,806 posts, read 54,470,896 times
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Look at Detroit, where many vacant homes can be purchased for as little as $5,000. The city is bankrupt, and can't afford to buy them for the homeless or anyone else. At the other extreme, look at Seattle, where a broken down little old 2 bedroom 1 bath goes for over $400,000, a small vacant lot goes for $200,000-$700,000. The city is not in a dire financial
situation but still can't afford to buy land and build, or to buy and renovate old homes for the homeless. Even if they could, the neighborhood residents would put up a big fight, even to combining assets to outbid the city and buy the properties to prevent them from becoming homeless shelters and affect their property values.
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Old 11-18-2014, 08:50 AM
 
Location: Bay Area, Calif.
2,435 posts, read 2,845,232 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eschaton View Post
There are basically three kinds of homeless people.

1. People who are homeless, but normal - just down on their luck. Many of these people have jobs. They sleep in their car, or couch surf at friends and families. If they found affordable housing, they mostly would be able to make rent and pay their bills.

2. The crazy and/or those addicted to drugs (including alcohol). This is most of the people you see on the streets in northern cities with harsh winter climates (discounting some panhandlers - the ones with good hygiene often actually have somewhere to live). They should be in an institutional setting, but we don't allocate enough money to social services to ensure this.

3. The "homeless by choice" - including young gutter punks/crusties and older "survivalist" types who want to live off the grid. Generally people who are homeless by choice will migrate to the south or west coast - no one with a choice wants to live on the streets in a city with harsh winters. I do wonder how much gentrification is pushing these folks out of their traditional haunts though - walkable neighborhoods are ideal if you don't have a home or a car, but actual places to squat in many cities are becoming limited.
This is also my observation. But unfortunately, the apathetic public would rather classify all people living on the street as lazy, criminal moochers so they dont have to bother with concern for them.
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