A recent study published by the Seattle University School of Law reveals the discriminatory basis of many laws aimed at those less fortunate.
Modern anti-homeless ordinances share the same form, phrasing, and function as historical discrimination laws, such as Jim Crow.
Read the report and learn more about the Homeless Rights Advocacy Project here
Besides the societal stigma homeless people face, many cities are passing more laws that apply to homeless people and/or charities that help them. Last fall saw the high-profile case in Florida where an elderly man was arrested for feeding homeless individuals in a public space. Should being in need make you a criminal?
Fact No. 9 reflects the seriousness of mental health and substance abuse. While it is not a fair stereotype, up to 1/4 of those who find themselves homeless suffer from mental illness and about half of those also have substance abuse issues. For some people, substance abuse is a form of self-medication. Some folks became homeless due to addiction or mental illness and some only begin using illicit substances and/or alcohol because of their homeless status. There are many sides to this Pandora’s box.
The Greater Seattle Cares program published this report in 2013 on 26 commonly held misconceptions about homelessness. These myths & facts apply across the nation, no matter what location.
Here’s an excerpt and fundamental philosophy shared by The Habitation:
“Ending a complex problem like homelessness requires a commitment from all members of our community–government officials, philanthropies, faith and civic groups, communities of color and their institutions and organizations, businesses including small business owners, housing and service providers, and concerned individuals…As a community we can–and we will–end homelessness.”
The state of being homeless is a multifaceted issue for many. A one-size-fits-all approach to eliminating homelessness does not work. We need multiple options available to meet the needs of the unhoused. With community involvement we can make a difference! Will you help us in our efforts to bring a Tiny House Village to the Kenai Peninsula? If you would like to find out how you can volunteer, please contact Krista Schooley at 907-252-2081 or e-mail at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whose job is it to care for the needs of the homeless and poor?
Still in the affordable housing vein, Fact 7 highlights the housing crisis and unemployment crisis we have been facing for the past several years.
Unemployment is down nationwide, yes, according to the numbers. The reality is that people are qualifying for less time, no extensions, and required to fill out work search requirements in order to prove you’re trying to find work. But finding work here on the Kenai that can support a family can be difficult. Tourist season is imminent and along with the summer months comes increased job opportunities as employers ramp up for the extra business in months ahead. Unfortunately the same time period sees a dramatic increase in rents for many available properties. And most of these jobs are temporary and low pay.
Happy Monday all! Picking up where we left off last Friday, we’re half-way through. Similar to #5, #6 highlights the need for more affordable housing. The thinkers and supporters of The Habitation believe in the model of tiny houses as a step in the right direction for providing more housing options.
There is a common misconception in our society today that homeless people are lazy and/or do not have a job or jobs. This is far from reality. Today, more than ever, we see the working poor being un-housed. They may own a vehicle and have some means, they simply cannot afford housing. We see this on the Peninsula, especially in the summer months when tourists take up housing and cost skyrocket.