Sunday, May 25, 2008

The 10 Year Plan To End Homelessness Works!

Latest Report from Rick Reynolds at Nightwatch

I came back from the bars last night -- it was 11:45, there were still four women in our shelter dispatch center; two looked like candidates for a nursing home. They could barely walk. Sick enough to require attention, but not sick enough for our messed up health care system.

These two struggled to simply get out the door and to the bus stop. The survival plan for the night was to ride the Metro 174 bus all night. Apparently you can get a transfer that is good all night.

219 served. 18 women turned away into the night with just a blanket. 24 men with no place to go. This is nuts. God help us.

An Official Response from Seattle's Mayor Greg Nickels

Buses are are not an appropriate place for people to spend the night. Seattle is committed to ending homelessness, and has formed a partnership of city and county, human services providers, private charity, and business leaders to take an outcomes-based approach to ending the problem instead of just managing it with shelter and emergency services. Housing with services, not shelter, is the answer to ending homelessness.

It's a ten year plan, not a two year plan. We know we have a ways to go. The 1811 Eastlake project has already saved $2.5 million in emergency services costs by providing housing with services to chronically homeless street alcoholics. Plymouth Housing, $3.5 million commitment, blah, blah, blah. This proves the Ten Year Plan is on track and working. The City of Seattle already spends more than $40 million annually on homelessness and housing. Seattle is a regional and national leader on this issue.

If you would like to know more about how Seattle is ending homelessness, please call Bill Block at the Committee to End Homelessness, and he'll utter more or less the same words while we manipulate our massive, um, amounts of data, and continue to throw away people's survival gear to drive the bums out of town. Or, you could just fuck off directly. Thanks for sharing!


Bill said...

actually, we are finishing YEAR 3 of the 10 Year Plan, and we have lost 4 times as many units as we have built. Oh, but hey, we do have a trolley, and a line of City Council members ready to dance behind the Mayor all the way down any street where folks will line up to ride an amusement park ride. Homelessness? We are choosing to ban the homeless; to wit, no homeless encampments, get off the buses, don't sleep in your cars,don't build homeless housing if it will disturb birds a few thousand yards away, and oh yes, "go somewhere else."

Anonymous said...

OK, so why not work it out in the courts and get an injunction to stop the sweeps until a decision is rendered?

Seems like the demonstrations aren't doing anything.

Another anonymous said...

The legal angle is being explored...and you're probably right, the City doesn't care about demonstrations.

Tim Harris said...

Public pressure has made a difference, although the Mayor's office is supremely committed to this course of action. Legal strategies are a possibility. This is a long haul legal fight. LA took four years. You make it sound so easy.

Legal strategies are good as far as they go, but they don't involve people, create a base of support, or build for power. They are not a substitute for organizing.

Anonymous said...

The camp-outs make for great theater.

Don't know if it changes anybody's mind or if it's a parody.

It certainly hasn't changed of Mr. Painter, Mr. Ceis or Mr. Nickels.