Written by Nathaniel Mannor
During the COVID-19 pandemic, homelessness in California tripled, meaning that only 36% of homeless people lived that way before the pandemic. Now, the Golden State is attempting to turn the situation around with a $12 billion spending package to create more permanent housing and mental health centers for the homeless. This is by far the largest spending spree California spent on this crisis, but as always, big spending doesn’t mean big solutions.
One solution goes towards providing each homeless person a bed to sleep on, as across California, the ratio of beds to people is 1. 3. The bill created two projects which give homeless people temporary housing in hotel and motel rooms (Project Roomkey) and created roughly 6,000 new units (Project Homekey).
However, creating new short-term shelter options doesn’t help get people into permanent homes. Additionally, many homeless people don’t want to return to shelters where they are in danger of theft and violence by other destitute there.
The other strategy is to clear out encampments, as the all-knowing dictator-in-chief of California plans on evacuating 100 different locations. Yet, he failed to release the locations, drawing outrage from housing non-profit such as Housing California. On top of that, removing those in need from their housing camps only exacerbates drug overdoses, hospitalizations, and mortality rates.
So at the end of the day, not only does this $12 billion deal not help alleviate the homeless crisis, but it adds new fuel to the already out of control fire. So how do we deal with this mess? Although there are bed shortages, the government doesn’t count beds in churches that help the homeless. The best way forward is to loosen regulations and allow religious institutions, motivated by their will to help their fellow man, to take charge and leave the greedy Sacramento elites to their own devices.
Photo Cred: CNN