23 Mar 22, by Hello for good
“Beyond Homeless: Finding Hope”
Please see this impactful video about San Francisco’s homeless situation. In addition, there is an excellent white paper available for download.
I especially appreciated this quote from Dr. Drew Pinsky: “of course there are housing elements…. but I wish we would stop calling it “homelessness” and call it what it is, which is open-air asylum, shooting galleries, and the same. Think about dementia; you wouldn’t leave a demented patient running around on the streets, but we do it with people with other brain disorders…..and if you’re a drug addict; and this is what people miss about drug addiction. DRUG ADDICTION IS A PROGRESSIVE DISORDER THAT ENDS IN DEATH. So leaving people untreated is murder, in my humble opinion. It’s committing them to die.”
By Mary L.G. Theroux, Adam B. Summers, Lawrence J. McQuillan, Jonathan Hofer, Hovannes Abramyan and Scott Beyer. Edited by Adam B Summers
Video summary: homelessness is such a complicated and frustrating problem because it has so many different causes. And even when resources and successful programs are available, some portion of those experiencing homelessness will not choose to take advantage of them. Too often, people will say that it is just a substance abuse problem, just a mental illness problem, or just a housing problem. Too often, some homelessness reform advocates and politicians place their faith in finding a silver bullet and myopically try to enforce a one-size-fits-all policy. It is a mistake to think that placing people in housing will end homelessness, as many of them will end up back on the streets, especially if the underlying causes of their homelessness are not addressed. It is precisely because people are different, face different challenges, and begin—and continue—to experience homelessness for different reasons, that a multifaceted and individualized approach to the problem is necessary.