Boots & Sabers

The blogging will continue until morale improves...


Everything but tech support.

1857, 03 Jan 23

Housing First To Solve Homelessness


The White House’s strategy centers around a concept known as Housing First, a relatively new approach to homelessness that has shown some significant promise since it was pioneered a few decades ago. As the name suggests, Housing First is built around the principle of providing people with long-term housing before starting services to address their mental health, addiction or other challenges they face. Many anti-homelessness programs require participants to take part in counseling or prove they’re sober in order to receive benefits. Under Housing First, these supports are all voluntary.


When Housing First was first attempted in the early 1990s, it represented a sharp departure from what had been the previous consensus on homelessness — which was built around a so-called treatment-first approach, based on the belief that people needed to achieve a certain level of stability before providing them with housing.


Over the years, there have been several examples of cities that have significantly reduced homelessness using the Housing First strategy. Among the most successful is Houston, where homelessness has dropped more than 60% since 2011 thanks to a program that placed more than 25,000 people in long-term supportive housing. Housing First has helped reduce homelessness in places as diverse as Utah and Georgia, as well as cities in Canada and across Europe.


But there are also examples of places where Housing First doesn’t appear to have worked. During the past two years, California has spent $14 billion to combat homelessness — most of it on Housing First programs — but the number of people living on the street has continued to rise. Growing concerns about homelessness have become a major political issue in a number of liberal big cities in recent years, in some cases prompting local leaders to rely more on police in their response.

By definition, Housing First solves homelessness because it moves people off the street and into homes. It does not, however, solve the underlying issues that cause homelessness (mental illness, drug use, etc.). It just moves their plight out of sight at huge taxpayer expense.


1857, 03 January 2023

1 Comment

  1. Mar

    There is always going to be homeless people.
    First, you have people who choose homeless.
    Then you have the mentally ill who refuse treatment.
    Then you have the criminals and other people who have made bad choices in their lives..
    Then you have the addicted.
    There are very, very few people who are just down on their luck who are homeless

Pin It on Pinterest