Two Things You Need to Do Now to Help End Chronic Homelessness in D.C. by 2017
Email the DC Council Before Their May 28th Budget Meeting
By Sarah Ford on May 8, 2014
On any given night in the District, there are nearly 1,800 individuals and families living on the streets and in shelters who are considered chronically homeless – they have been homeless for years and struggle with significant issues like mental illness and chronic health conditions. These are some of our most vulnerable residents.
Solutions to chronic homelessness
In alignment with research and national best practices promoted by the US Interagency Council on Homelessness, HUD, the 100,000 Homes Campaign, and DC’s Collective Impact movement:
- Housing is the solution to ending chronic homelessness and Permanent Supportive Housing (PSH) using the Housing First model is the most effective intervention for people experiencing homelessness the longest.
- Access to housing should be available without requirements like sobriety or participation in health or mental health treatment. With safe and affordable housing a person can successfully address health, mental health, substance abuse, and other goals.
- Coordination is key to success. We must prioritize people who are the most vulnerable. By creating both community-wide eligibility criteria and application process for PSH we can ensure that those who need housing most get housing first.
- Resources must be adequate to meet the need. New resources are needed and existing housing resources must be used more effectively. Our entire community – individuals, nonprofits, business, faith, government, philanthropy – has an essential role in contributing resources and momentum to ending chronic homelessness.
The Way Home, a campaign to end chronic homelessness in D.C. by 2017, believes that the District of Columbia has the resources, creativity, and ability to end chronic homelessness. This is a vital step in our greater efforts to end homelessness in our community. But they need your help in order to be successful.
What You Can Do to Help:
- Email the Council Today: D.C. has a plan to end chronic homelessness, but needs to fund the plan. On May 28th the DC Council finalizes the city budget. Sign you name to the pre-crafted email to show the council that ending chrocic homelessness is a priority that you expect them to fund. Click here to get started.
- Spread the Word: After you sign your name to the email, share this information with your networks and encourage your friends and family to sign the email too.