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Old 11-17-2014, 08:28 PM
 
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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?
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Old 11-17-2014, 08:53 PM
 
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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.
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Old 11-17-2014, 08:58 PM
 
Location: southern california
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U r assuming that street people are really homeless people who are looking for a home
U don't like bummy people hustling u when u go to Starbucks and eye balling your iphone
U have decided that they need to change their life style to suit yours
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:04 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
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Look up Utah's Housing First program. It seems to be working and I think it's pretty impressive. But I do worry homeless people will start moving there because of the program.

In our opinion: Utah's Housing First program proves successful | Deseret News
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:16 PM
 
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Homeless people moving places to obtain housing flies in the face of the most common misconception about homeless people, namely that they are homeless by choice. "Housing First" is an idea that has been around for a decade or so, it works pretty well and actually saves money to house people, thanks to the money saved from reduced hospital stays, jail time, crisis center interventions, ER visits, homeless shelter beds occupied, etcetera. But people don't like it because they haven't "earned" the housing, or don't "deserve" it.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:46 PM
 
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Hmmm...

Well,

Why couldn't a city build small cheap shelters, maybe styled a little like dorms or guest houses, and charge a very low fee for occupants to rent them, like say one-hundred dollars per occupant per month? Ten or twenty occupants would be paying enough to the project to keep it running, and the cities may even make a small profit. There would also be little complaining, because the homeless people would be paying their own way but paying what they could afford. Since these wouldn't be designated projects or shelters, they could also have barriers for entry, such as drug testing and a maximum residency duration, so that everyone could stay safe. Also, since these wouldn't be known homeless shelters but disguised as regular houses, group homes, boarding houses, etc., perhaps there wouldn't be such a strong stigma, and these could exist in safer neighborhoods. I hate the idea of people being thrown away. If I had the resources, I think I would certainly do something.

Last edited by krmb; 11-17-2014 at 09:57 PM..
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:47 PM
 
Location: Tijuana Exurbs
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Another road block to housing the homeless, are the building codes. Many homeless have psychological and personality issues that cause them to not live well with others and they avoid the shelters as a consequence. But if they had their own room to withdraw too when their psychoses acted up, they might function better in housing that was more individualized and less group. However, to make that housing more affordable to build, make it smaller. The smallest legal housing unit you can build in San Diego is 400 square feet. If that were reduced to 200 square feet, you could house substantially more (but not twice as many) people for the same dollars. You might even go smaller still, and build those Japanese style sleeping pods.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:50 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kmb501 View Post
Hmmm...

Well,

Why couldn't a city build small cheap shelters, maybe styled a little like dorms or guest houses, and charge a very low fee for occupants to rent them, like say one-hundred dollars per occupant per month? Ten or twenty people would be giving enough to the project to keep it running, and the cities may even maybe make a small profit. There would also be little complaining, because the homeless people would be paying their own way but paying what they could afford. Since these wouldn't be designated projects or shelters, they could also have barriers for entry, such as drug testing and a maximum residency duration, so that everyone could stay safe.
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.
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Old 11-17-2014, 09:59 PM
 
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its sounds good and a very good utopian pipedream but think about this for a second and you realize it aint possible
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Old 11-17-2014, 10:03 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ace_TX View Post
its sounds good and a very good utopian pipedream but think about this for a second and you realize it aint possible
There are sound working people with college degrees on the streets. Why are you saying it isn't possible to serve them? That could easily be one of us.
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