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Solving Homelessness

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by ValueAnalyst, Sep 29, 2017.

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  1. ValueAnalyst

    ValueAnalyst Active Member

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    #1 ValueAnalyst, Sep 29, 2017
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2017
    This is a subject I deeply care about, and I need your help.

    Many organizations try to help the homeless, but the problem persists today. More than one million people in the United States alone, one of the most developed nations in the world, live on the streets, and each day go through the soul-crushing process of asking for money. They are rejected, mocked, beaten, raped.

    Why is this problem not yet solved?

    What needs to be done to solve it?

    Ideas welcome.

    upload_2017-9-29_7-18-9.png
     
  2. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

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    Start by treating it as a symptom of other problems and it will help reduce it significantly.
     
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  3. ValueAnalyst

    ValueAnalyst Active Member

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    So mental illness? Could you please elaborate? Thank you in advance.
     
  4. ItsNotAboutTheMoney

    ItsNotAboutTheMoney Well-Known Member

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    In the UK, for example, an estimate 40% of homeless people suffer from a mental illness. Mental illness makes it hard for people to maintain the consistency that allows them to have a stable income that keeps them housed.

    Then there's addiction. (Which also overlaps with mental ilness). There's significant substance abuse among the homeless (sometimes after becoming homeless, sometimes causing homelessness) (Read one with 38% of homeless people abusing alcohol and 26% drugs).

    Then there's unstable backgrounds which make it very easy for young people to end up homeless. In the USA 12 to 36% of young people exiting foster care end up homeless.

    Of course, the cost of housing contributes.

    Things can be done, but it will take more money and a shift in attitude.
     
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  5. ValueAnalyst

    ValueAnalyst Active Member

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    This is perfect. It provides me with a starting point. I cannot thank you enough.

    - Mental illness
    - Substance abuse/addiction
    - Parenting
    - Cost of housing

    I can definitely take these on. Thank you so much.
     
  6. Zythryn

    Zythryn MS 70D, MX 90D

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    Great subject for discussion!
    If you haven't heard of Utah's program, this is a great story: Utah Reduced Chronic Homelessness By 91 Percent; Here's How

    Note, they didn't reduce ALL homelessness by 91 percent, but they did eliminate 91% of chronic homelessness. And by their calculations, saved $5000/year.
     
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  7. Tummy

    Tummy Member

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  8. arcus

    arcus Member

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    Don't forget about life-changing event/circumstances that might push people over the edge. It does not necessarily qualify as mental illness, but I've met at least a couple people that ended up homeless due to that :(
     
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  9. jeffro01

    jeffro01 Active Member

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    Perhaps not encouraging the behavior would be a start. I live in a region overrun by homeless, the SF Bay Area. Why? Because so many local governments here encourage the behavior.

    The City of San Francisco spends over $240 MILLION a year of tax payer money on this "problem" and yet you can't go anywhere in SF without being harassed by a homeless person. The streets are used as toilets and the parks are being turned into makeshift tent cities. Clearly throwing money at the problem isn't working.

    There are a few primary causes and categories that require different approaches to solve. Mental illness is a major concern and accounts for a measurable portion. Due to changes in the law over the years it's very difficult to get these people the help they need since they can't be forced into it. From there you have the addicts. These people also have problems getting the help they need due to a number of factors of which as a difficult to handle as relapse is almost a guarantee. So long as addiction continues to be ignored as a mental health issue, nothing changes. Then you have the financial hardship homeless who lost their job and then their residence. They need temporary assistance to get back on their feet.

    Lastly, you have the "career" homeless and they get their own paragraph. That's a large portion of the homeless we have here and it's obscene. These people aren't interested in being productive members of society, they aren't interested in getting back on their feet, they're interested in sucking as much free stuff out of a willing local society as humanly possible. They have overrun many areas of this region such as Peoples Park in Berkeley, etc... This is the group I don't have any kind of an answer for, at least not one that isn't inflammatory.

    Just my two cents... I know there are people exceptionally passionate about this issue who are likely to take offense at this post and I fully understand that but after living in this region for quiet some time, I'm just tired of it...

    Jeff
     
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  10. Lloyd

    Lloyd Well-Known Member

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    Anyone who is concerned should spend several days per month 'helping' and learning the problem. I spend several days per month through my local rotary group. Hands on is the best!! Throwing money at the problem is not.

    2nd, take a look at other countries. Our problem is minuscule compared to that of others.
     
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  11. ValueAnalyst

    ValueAnalyst Active Member

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    It definitely is a global problem, and I agree that personal involvement makes a big difference. Thank you for your insight.
     
  12. aubreymcfato

    aubreymcfato Member

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    This problem is huge and @ItsNotAboutTheMoney answer addresses many important factor.
    I'll add that economic systems/macro do play an important role too.

    Where I live (Italy), after 2008 crisis many people lost their job, and that often was the first step of a slippery slope that led them to be homeless. Economic support, as well as health support, is crucial for not having people ending on the streets.

    If you live in US, probably the best thing you can do is to advocate for universal health care.
     
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  13. UrsS

    UrsS Member

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    This is so important and will solve so many problems, so I repeat it:
    "If you live in US, probably the best thing you can do is to advocate for universal health care"
     
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  14. Uncle Paul

    Uncle Paul Member

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    Seems like the areas that give the best services also get the most homeless.

    If one person in a thousand gave a homeless person a room in their own home, the problem might be gone in a flash. Millions of people have extra bedrooms only being used a few nights a year for visiting friends and relatives. Making them available to the homeless would cost little, but have a huge reduction in human suffering.

    Governments could give advice and training to the charitable people taking people in to help them be successful.

    I saw this work with unwanted animals. Dogs an cats are now rescued by the millions by individuals trying on their own to resolve the problem of so many unwanted pets being euthanized. Maybe it could work with people in dire straights.
     
  15. oktane

    oktane Active Member

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    Natural selection. Stop giving these people money, it only encourages the bad behavior. Mental illness is the first thing to tackle, then addiction.

    Ever try giving a homeless man food or buying them a meal instead of giving them cash - they can get quite irate and insist you give them money instead so they can use it for their vice.
     
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  16. kort677

    kort677 Banned

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    the homeless population may have many problems that cause their homelessness but they aren't foolish, they'll try to go where there is minimal harassment from law enforcement, opportunities to find a bed, food and a place to address their hygienic needs. why do you think that you'll rarely see a big homeless issue in the more rural areas and a larger presence of homeless in more urban settings?

    considering that a large portion of the homeless population have mental or addiction issues, do you really believe bringing those issues into your home is a wise idea?


    I think that many of the homeless focused charities could be giving the government advice on how to deal with this problem, government usually is part of a problem and not always a solution, isn't the story line that government policies is a cause of homelessness?
    equating pets and people? I think that is an oversimplification of a much bigger issue.
     
  17. kort677

    kort677 Banned

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    many of the homeless population have mental or addiction issues and in many cases they refuse any sort of help from charities or government to get them into any sort of rehab.
     
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  18. purplewalt

    purplewalt Active Member

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    In addition to the homeless who truly live 'on the streets', there is also the "hidden homeless", those who have kids and are living on the edge of homelessness. This is not just in large cities, but almost everywhere in America.

    Yesterday, there was an article about a movie portraying such a life:
    In 'Florida Project,' A First-Time Actress Plays A Single Mom Doing Her Best

    Having a child without a husband/boyfriend, having no skills and not having family to rely on can put one in a very bleak situation.
     
  19. kort677

    kort677 Banned

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    you're right, there are so many people trapped in situations like this. sadly people like her get trapped by their poor choices made in life and then enter into the cycle of poverty, addiction, homelessness. it is a pit that is almost impossible for those who fall into to climb out of.
     

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