Joel John Roberts
Posts by Joel John Roberts
But it’s the slow pace of addressing homelessness in our country that is literally killing people who are dying on our streets. We should all feel the sense of urgency to fund solutions and end homelessness every single day, until it’s no longer an issue.
Five years ago, I wrote a blog piece wondering how our country would respond to homelessness if Donald Trump was elected President. That was in 2011 when almost everyone thought a Trump Presidency was simply all talk. However, in just a few weeks, President Trump becomes a reality – and not a reality TV show, […]
It is difficult to predict the future, however, for local leaders who are desperately in search of solutions to address homelessness on their streets, depending on resources from a federal government that is leaning toward less government participation could be a recipe for a larger human crisis.
We are afraid to admit that the crisis of homelessness is our fault, even though the solution to homelessness is simple: provide housing for everyone.
But calling in the Cavalry to address homelessness simply does not work. Being homeless is not a crime. Any action that might criminalize a person’s state of homelessness simply attracts a civil lawsuit that essentially shuts down a community’s ability to actually help those who need housing, and prevents a community from dealing with those on the streets who are actually breaking real laws.
Give a person a real home – a studio apartment would suffice – with regular supportive services, and you have ended homelessness, at least for that one person. Clearly, an apartment is way better than a shelter bed.
To date, we have never had a proposed building turned down. However, the bruises from past community battles still hurt. The misconceptions, the attacks, and the miseducation start as soon as a community gets word that a “homeless program wants to move in.”
Cities throughout California are seeing more tents on the sidewalk, sleeping bags in their parks, and bodies of sleeping people sprawled inside of business vestibules. They are clear signs that visible homelessness is increasing at an alarming rate.
You are faceless. We walk by you very quickly, darting our glance away from you, intentionally not making eye contact. We don’t want to know what you look like. You might be sick, or dirty, or your appearance just might make us feel guilty.
The cost of higher tuition in America’s higher learning institutions is actually causing a more dramatic consequence on many of our country’s college students… more and more university students are going to bed hungry or are actually homeless.