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A Novel Approach: Ending Homelessness with Homes

Homeless with Bike

The Dallas City Council thinks it has a strategy for ending homelessness in the city, and it's fabulously uncomplicated: housing for the homeless. Not shelters, but actual apartments. Next American City reports:

According to the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness, it costs more to maintain someone in homelessness than to offer permanent shelter. The group's study of 65 cities found that support services like hospitals, courts and police intervention cost between $35,000 and $150,000 per person per year. Providing housing runs between $13,000 and $25,000.

So Dallas has approved "a multimillion-dollar plan to provide 700 housing units over five years as permanent shelters throughout the city for the homelessness." The price tag for the plan could be as high as $18 million.

A recent study focusing soley on medical care for the homeless found hospitals that reach out to help homeless people before they pass through emergency room doors can save hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.

There's a pattern here. All roads lead to giving a damn.

Source: Next American City (Article not available online)

Image by Franco Folini, licensed under Creative Commons .