Democrats & Liberals Archives

Resources to Help the Homeless

Homelessness has plagued the United States since the 1970s, and we haven’t experienced anything like our current situation since the Great Depression. The rise in the number of people who find themselves homeless is attributed to a number of different factors. The changes the government made to mental health policies in the 1950s, the decline in single-room housing stock, multiple economic recessions, and safety issues in shelters are just a few.

There are many organizations and government programs that work to serve the underdogs that have found themselves on the streets. Navigating government websites and accessing those programs are often too difficult for those who are floundering in search of their next meal. Educating yourself on how and where to access benefits for others can be a way of committing to community service by passing it along to others.


Housing Resources

In the face of the housing crisis, particularly in rural areas, resources are needed. The belief that providing housing for the homeless is the most beneficial resource is an approach called Housing First. By providing a launching point for people to move forward from, a home allows people to put the other pieces of their life together without having to worry about where they are going to sleep that night.

It serves to meet the base of Maslow's hierarchy of needs -- along with food, clothing, and water. One cannot focus on job hunting or practical budgeting without having their basic needs met. Further, it keeps the homeless safe indoors and off the street. In densely populated urban areas, this can be a lifesaver, as pedestrian accidents are a real concern in high-population areas like San Antonio.

This approach does not require those participating in the program to address any other issues or to take part in other programs to be eligible for assistance. a willing participant is much more likely to succeed when they make the choice to better their situation rather than to be forced to do so. The resources for job assistance or mental health services are available but not pushed upon any individual.

Shelters and temporary housing are also immediately accessible to anyone who suddenly finds themselves without a bed and in need of temporary housing. Shelters typically are free, but some charge a small fee. Most shelters have a restriction on the length of stay a person is allowed, particularly in overcrowded urban city shelters.

Shelters often offer services for substance abuse, mental health services, and housing programs as well. In rare cases, shelters or local programs offer legal services, which can help the homeless population that often unintentionally gets into trouble with the law. There are also a number of programs and assistance for the disabled or veterans to provide them with housing.

Mental Illness and Homelessness
One of the prevailing reasons why people find themselves without a roof over their heads is due to an undiagnosed or untreated mental illness. The statistics are alarming: One in five Americans experiences a mental illness each year and one in 25 suffer from a serious, chronic mental illness. When comparing the number of people who live on the streets and the occurrence of mental illness, the numbers further highlight the need to address homelessness in our nation.

According to Ohio University, 554,000 people were homeless in 2017, and of that population, one-third are estimated to have an untreated mental illness. One in three people who are sleeping on the streets without protection from innumerable elements is experiencing mental health instability.

Issues with mental health may make it difficult for someone to hold a stable job or to execute normal day-to-day activities that result in them becoming homeless. Once they find themselves without a home or a job, it can be even more difficult to recover than the average person.

Offering mental health services to the homeless can help them to undergo evaluations and obtain medications where they need to help get them back on track. By giving a person the chance to obtain mental stability and clarity, their chances of survival increase.

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has a number of programs and grants for homeless people dealing with mental illness:

  • Cooperative Agreements to Benefit Homeless Individuals
  • Grants for the Benefit of Homeless Individuals
  • Projects for Assistance in Transition from Homelessness
  • Treatment for Individuals Experiencing Homelessness
  • SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery

It is our duty to help our fellow Americans to get back on their feet. A majority (78%) of Americans live paycheck to paycheck and are one catastrophe away from finding themselves unable to pay their rent. Spreading the word of available resources to those who are currently homeless continues to be a challenge, but we can improve the situation by discussing it, informing others about available resources, and advocating for change.

Each American is entitled to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness -- but how can you pursue happiness when you don't know where you are going to sleep each night? Economic inequality is leading too many of the nation's poor to live on the streets. With the upcoming elections, there is a chance for us to rally together to elect an individual who will work to serve all Americans -- and not just the wealthy 1 percent. Providing aid to the homeless is a necessity, and we have to act sooner rather than later.

Posted by Magnolia at May 15, 2019 4:40 PM
Comments
Comment #443474

One thing that steals resources from U.S. citizens (money, shelters, healthcare, welfare) is over $1.1 Billion per day for non-citizens ($0.75 Billion per day alone for border security), not to mention the crime and several homicides per day by criminal non-citizens.

Notice the cities where the problem is worst (i.e. Democrat run cities) as of 2018:

  • (01) ############################## 79K (NYC,NY)
  • (02) #################### 50K (LA, CA)
  • (03) ##### 12K (Seattle,WA)
  • (04) ### 9K (San Diego,CA)
  • (05) ## 7K (San Diego,CA)
  • (06) ## 7K (D.C.)
  • (07) ## 7K (San Francisco,CA)

Posted by: d.a.n at May 15, 2019 5:21 PM
Comment #443475

The big question is: Why do many Democrats seem more willing to help non-citizens, than U.S. citizens?
Is it severely misplaced compassion, or do the Democrats have an ulterior motive based on these 15 practices by many Democrats ?
That is, it appears that many Democrats are pitting U.S. citizens and illegal immigrants against each other for votes, by pandering to illegal immigrants for 30+ years, to acquire more votes, via more representation in the House, via more U.S. House representatives, via re-apportionment of representatives (i.e. more electoral votes, and more federal funding), based on population, which is based on the decennial CENSUS, which does not verify U.S. citizenship; therefore, districts, counties, and states with higher decennial CENSUS numbers (since citizenship is not verified), receive more electoral votes, and more federal funding, based on population (of which many tens of millions are non-citizens), and it is also a way to turn RED states to BLUE states.

Posted by: d.a.n at May 15, 2019 5:27 PM
Comment #443476

“With the upcoming elections, there is a chance for us to rally together to elect an individual who will work to serve all Americans — and not just the wealthy 1 percent.”

This writer gets the Pollyanna award for this year. Seldom have I read such obvious political drivel.

One must suspend their belief system to swallow the following Liberal/Progressive/Socialist gem…

“This approach does not require those participating in the program to address any other issues or to take part in other programs to be eligible for assistance. a willing participant is much more likely to succeed when they make the choice to better their situation rather than to be forced to do so.”

I am generous to organizations who give a helping hand to those in need. Only a loony would give anyone an open ticket to lifetime welfare. Such generosity is certain to make the recipient a ward of government for life. That is disgusting.

Posted by: Royal Flush at May 15, 2019 5:31 PM
Comment #443492

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Posted by: d.a.n at May 16, 2019 7:21 AM
Comment #443515

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Comment #443591

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Posted by: d.a.n at May 18, 2019 8:04 PM
Comment #443633

This is a national issue that needs to be given so much attention by the government. Estimated at over 3.1 million, the Philippines has the highest number of homeless people in the world where roughly 1.2 million are children and more than 70,000 rambles in the nation’s capital, Metro Manila. Resolving this issue is not as easy as can be but let’s hope for the better. :)

Brielle | https://thesoutherninstitute.com/

Posted by: Brielle Luna at May 20, 2019 8:11 AM
Comment #443658

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Comment #443733

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Comment #443748

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Posted by: d.a.n at May 22, 2019 2:57 PM
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