Here’s the basic information I had going in: the feds and state orgs and nonprofits and people around the world have been looking at ‘the problem of homelessness’ for a while. What they’ve found out is you have to provide a foundation before you bring in services.
It’s really kind of a no-brainer. When people feel stable, they are in a better position to relax and heal. It’s one of the cornerstones of medicine. So how does that apply here?
Some folks need to be in an institution; some jail. But the vast majority need what most humans need: safe, secure shelter, i.e. a home.
That launches folks into their first offensive defense: ALL or MOST homeless are (a) homeless by choice (b) on THE DRUGS and/or (c) mentally disturbed. And damned near everyone has a story to ‘prove it’.
My response? (a) there’s usually reasons why folks don’t want to go back to ‘that home’ (might be abuse, might be trauma) which doesn’t mean they don’t want a home. (b) damn near the entire country is drugged and (c) mentally ill… don’t get me started.
Can you, at a glance, recognize the difference between pre-existing conditions, conditions exacerbated by circumstance, conditions brought on by physical injury, conditions brought on by trauma, conditions brought on by nutritional deficit or someone pretending?
That’s what we have experts for. And procedures to match them up with the housing they need.
That’s the promise on the table. A developer is going to throw up some decent apartments. Professionals screen the folks who get in. They get a private space that is theirs period until they decide to move on. And, finally, they get all sorts of cool services to help them heal.
Should be good enough to let them do what they need to do, right?
Yeah… not according to a part of the community.