Check out the TB2K CHATROOM, open 24/7               Configuring Your Preferences for OPTIMAL Viewing
  To access our Email server, CLICK HERE

  If you are unfamiliar with the Guidelines for Posting on TB2K please read them.      ** LINKS PAGE **



*** Help Support TB2K ***
via mail, at TB2K Fund, P.O. Box 24, Coupland, TX, 78615
or


ECON Homeless services in Alaska face uncertain future as state cuts back
+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 19 of 19
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    NW Ohio
    Posts
    5,417

    Homeless services in Alaska face uncertain future as state cuts back

    Allan Lamprey had been homeless for almost all his adult life. Struggling with substance and alcohol use, he moved around the country, from his home state of Virginia, to Maryland and then out to California. Eventually, he made his way up to Alaska in 2008.

    Lamprey found himself in Fairbanks, the hub city of Interior Alaska with a population of just a little over 30,000, where the average January low is minus 19.

    Winter hit him hard.

    "It was something I had never experienced before," Lamprey, 60, said. "It's hard to live when it's 40 below."

    A worker from a 12-step program found Lamprey in the woods with a 12 pack of beer in his hand, and asked him if he wanted help. Eventually, he got sober and linked up with the Fairbanks Rescue Mission, a local homeless organization, to get shelter and work.

    Lamprey started as a cook, became a shelter manager, and now directs the recycling center the mission runs to help homeless people get job experience.
    "If it wasn't for the mission, I'd be dead," he said.

    But stories of rehabilitation and success, like Lamprey's, might soon become increasingly rare in Alaska, advocates for the homeless warn.

    In a vast state that dwarfs California in size and where freezing to death is a very real threat, Alaska faces unique challenges in tackling homelessness. In its few cities, more commonplace homelessness problems are exacerbated by the weather and a lack of statewide infrastructure. But with sweeping budget cuts made this summer across the board by Republican Gov. Mike Dunleavy, resources for homeless services have been stretched even thinner. This summer, shelters in Anchorage had to close during the day, putting mothers out on the streets with their children at 8 a.m., with operators having to make the tough decision of who could stay and who had to leave.

    In rural areas, building homes is so expensive that the only way to stave off homelessness is by living in overcrowded houses. In the most remote parts of the state, 15 people sleeping in a 700-square-foot home is not uncommon, often leading to health issues.

    Advocates and nonprofits have spent years studying and trying to tackle what they call Alaska's two-pronged homelessness crisis. Put simply, they need more money. But as the state cuts back, they worry about how they'll continue to hang on to the services they offer and keep the people they serve warm.

    'A war with not enough weapons'

    As the country began to crawl out of the 2008 recession, Alaska took an economic hit when oil prices plummeted in 2014. Amid a mounting deficit and an economy in decline, then-state Sen. Dunleavy ran a 2018 gubernatorial campaign saying he would rein in spending. He also promised to "pay back" residents money he said they were "owed" after a few years of cuts to the annual dividend every Alaskan receives from the state's oil wealth under a law first enacted in 1980.

    Dunleavy won last November in a contentious election: a few weeks before Alaskans headed to the polls, Gov. Walker, an independent, dropped out and endorsed Democrat and former U.S. Senator Mark Begich to no avail.

    Dunleavy has since tried to stick to his promise. This year, he unveiled sweeping and unprecedented cuts to education, Medicaid, senior services, heating assistance and homeless services that he said were needed to right the state's budget. According to the governor's office, Alaska has exhausted its savings since the price of oil dropped.

    Initially, Dunleavy proposed to cut $7.2 million from the Homeless Assistance Program, which was later scaled back to $3.6 million, but advocates are worried that these cuts will not only impact current services but also reverse the progress made to Alaska's vulnerable homelessness infrastructure.

    "It feels like we are in a war with not enough weapons," Rodney Gaskins, who runs the Fairbanks Rescue Mission, told NBC News.

    Twelve beds for youths in an area the size of Texas

    Gaskins describes being homeless in Fairbanks as "almost like a death sentence."
    In winter or when the snow finally melts, Alaska residents start finding bodies: a teenager walking around without shoes who died in the night, a person in a tent that just wasn't warm enough. In Fairbanks, there are three shelters: the Rescue Mission, Youth Advocates and the Interior Alaska Center for Non-Violent Living. The three organizations make sure not to duplicate services and strive to fill in as many gaps as they can. But they say the problem is just too big for them to solve alone while serving all of the Interior, a region approximately the size of Texas that often sees snow from September through May.

    Marylee Bates founded and runs Fairbanks Youth Advocates. At its youth shelter The Door, Bates has 12 beds and a small budget but a will to help as many kids as she can.

    Teens come to The Door for a variety of reasons, some are homeless and others are seeking to leave a dangerous living situation. But in a region that has towns like Fort Yukon with a population of about 540, where the only way to Fairbanks is a one-way flight whose fare hovers around $140, it's difficult to have access to help.
    "In the winter, the youth often just hunker down and put up with what's going on," Bates said.

    Before she opened the shelter, Interior Alaska went about 10 years with no place to house its homeless youths. Opening the shelter, Bates says, took "a series of miracles." Now, she says it's a miracle every time a youth makes it to The Door, looking for a place to stay, hoping to get out of danger, the cold, or both.

    When Fairbanks' homelessness providers found out about the governor's proposed budget cuts earlier this summer, they weren't sure how they would go on. Ultimately, providers will lose 20 percent of their state funding a number Bates and Gaskins said is more dire than it may seem.

    Since opening The Door five years ago, Bates has received almost all the supplies and food needed for the roughly 125 youths she helps each year from donations.
    "I'm not sure how much more the community can dig in their pockets," she said. "We can't cut bread and milk."

    Bates will lose about $37,000 in funding and has to reduce her staff, her main expense, by a position and a half. But requirements mandate she have a 1 to 6 staff-to-youth ratio to stay open during waking hours.
    "We have two paid staff on three shifts a day, seven days a week," Bates explained. "To lose a position and a half is significant."

    Gaskins is feeling the budget cuts too. His organization sheltered more than 900 people last year, served more than 50,000 meals, and helped house about 50 veterans. Now, he has to cut a transitional program staff member, who helps get people out of homelessness, and figure out where else they can make up for the shortfall while staying as effective as possible.
    "Alaska is turning its back on the most vulnerable," Gaskins said. "There already isn't enough treatment in Fairbanks."

    A city in emergency

    In Anchorage, a similar situation is unfolding on a much larger scale.
    Facing down Dunleavy's original budget cuts in June and July, the homelessness services in Anchorage, which holds almost half of Alaska's population, had to cut back. Hundreds in shelters were told to leave and 24-hour shelters closed their doors during the day. And the governor wasn't just proposing cutting funding to homeless services, but also free legal services to people working through eviction, Medicaid, senior benefits, mental health services and food banks.

    Many of the city's residents felt certain that with scaled back government services, more people would become homeless, Jasmine Boyle, executive director of the Anchorage Coalition to End Homelessness, said.

    Anchorage saw the cuts as a public health and safety crisis and declared a civil emergency in July, liquidating funds to assist the city's homeless population. But the funds used were those usually put toward funding homeless services during the winter when there's a greater need. "Money for extra shelter in the winter isn't there anymore," Boyle said of the short-term effects.

    In total, $3.6 million was cut from the Homeless Assistance Program, but the state's Special Needs Housing Grant program stepped in and allocated $2 million to make up part of the difference. Even with that extra help, Anchorage still saw funding cut by 20 percent.

    Long-term, homeless service providers are unsure what their already delicate future will look like. The Anchorage Coalition to End Homelessness said of the 1,111 people experiencing homelessness in the city earlier this year, 1,014 were sheltered and an additional 7,300 people were kept off the streets in Anchorage thanks to the city's housing and transition services.

    Lisa Aquino, who runs Catholic Social Services in the city, says those she serves come from every corner of Alaska. Anchorage is the only place in the state where certain mental health services are provided, and people seeking treatment often wind up in Brother Francis Shelter, which Aquino's organization operates. The shelter houses many formerly incarcerated people too. "People get out of jail in Anchorage and they come straight to Brother Francis," she said.

    Then there are the people who want to leave Anchorage but can't the state's feeble road system has fewer miles than Connecticut's. "People come up to work in a cannery and they get stuck," Aquino explained. "They don't have enough money to get home."

    When she learned of the original cuts, Aquino said she was "wrecked." Brother Francis was looking at reducing its shelter population from around 240 people to 100. "We were trying to figure out who would live and die," she said.
    Taking in your neighbors, at a cost

    As a public battle for adequate funding for homeless services plays out in Anchorage, an invisible housing crisis is happening outside Alaska's cities.
    "In rural Alaska, homelessness is not manifested as people on the street," Chris Kolerok, the former president and CEO of the Bering Straits Regional Housing Authority, said. "In Arctic communities, instead of allowing your cousins to die, people will bring in other people who have no place to go."

    Kolerok says while this act of goodwill saves lives, it also has devastating effects on communities and disproportionately hurts Alaska Natives.

    In the United States, about 3 percent of houses are overcrowded using the Department of Housing and Urban Development's definition, but in parts of Alaska, rates can be as high as 50 percent.

    For those living in 700-square-foot houses with 15 other people, it's hard to sleep and harder to stay healthy.

    "In a severely overcrowded home, like 20 people in a house, people have to sleep in shifts because there are not enough surfaces," Kolerok said of people living in the Bering Straits, on Alaska's northwest coast.

    Overcrowding can also create health risks like respiratory issues, Kolerok said, accounting for around two-thirds of youth hospitalizations in rural Alaska. The Association of Alaska Housing Authorities reports that overcrowding in the southwestern Calista region leads residents to contract invasive pneumococcal disease at some of the highest rates in the world.

    A one-bedroom home without running water or sewage systems with four times the amount of people living inside than they are meant to is not a safe environment for anyone, the authority says. Even more, if one person in a house that shelters 20 has a substance use issue, 19 people will feel the effects.

    Brian Wilson, the executive director for the Alaska Coalition on Housing and Homeless, said that overcrowding is endemic to rural Alaska.
    "You see it in house after house," Wilson said. "Overcrowding doesn't really exist anywhere else in the U.S. to this scale."

    And while overcrowding might have a seemingly simple solution⁠ build more homes⁠ it's not cheap, and the governor's recent cuts will make it harder to solve.
    "We have regions where HUD estimates there is $500 million needed to alleviate the problem," Wilson said, and that's just one region of rural Alaska. "It's almost a nation-building type of investment to fix it."

    The parts of Alaska where overcrowding is the worst tend to be those that are most remote, where a gallon of milk can cost $10, and getting anything to residents is exorbitant. Often times, transporting the materials costs as much as the materials, and 2018 estimates from the Alaska Housing Finance Corporation say 16,100 units are needed to alleviate the overcrowding. Now, the governor's cuts to Alaska's Marine Highway System will make construction materials, groceries and basic necessities even more expensive to ship to rural areas as ferry routes become more infrequent.

    The little money that was once there to help overcrowded homes or at least maintain them has also been diminished under the new budget. Dunleavy's $5 million in cuts to the weatherization program that helps rural homes be retrofitted or fixed to help stay warm means the homes now won't have needed money for repairs.

    Some suggest those experiencing overcrowding should move⁠ and some do, which homeless service providers in Fairbanks and Anchorage can attest to ⁠ but Wilson says it's not that simple.

    "We are talking about cultures and people who have lived in these areas successfully for centuries, who are tied to fishing and land, and who speak languages that are only spoken in these regions," Wilson said of the Alaska Native communities suffering from overcrowding. "When you take an approach of 'it's a lot easier to move people to an urban center,' we are talking about culture killing."
    Even if people do move, Alaska's cities aren't necessarily ready to absorb the impact.

    More cuts to come

    Dunleavy maintains his stance that the cuts are necessary. "Our current fiscal outlook a $1.6 billion deficit and falling state revenues also requires us to prioritize every area of spending and review projects with an additional level of scrutiny that hasn't always occurred in the past," his office wrote in a statement to NBC News. "Mind you, the State of Alaska has exhausted more than $14 billion in savings over the last four years."

    The governor has vowed to make more cuts. Recently, the Anchorage Daily News reported that internal memos show him telling state agencies to prepare for another round of massive cuts next summer.

    Aquino knows what's ahead. "I expect we will be in the same situation on July 1, 2020" she said. "This was his platform, so that's my expectation."

    The only difference between this year and the next is that Aquino and her colleagues will have time to prepare. "What we have to do now is to think of how we are going to reduce services in a humane way," she said.

    For Lamprey, of Fairbanks, the cuts don't appear logical. He thinks a lack of proper investment in homelessness services and housing will only further hurt the state.
    "They always cut money for the homeless," he said. "But it costs more to put someone in jail than to rehabilitate them."


    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/ho...cid=spartandhp
    A socialist will trample over one hundred poor people just for the chance to throw a rock at a rich man.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    10,837
    Generally, anyone who is homeless in Alaska has a drug problem, a drinking problem, or is mentally ill (as is the case anywhere, of course, but more so there because anyone sane who WANTS to be homeless moves to a warmer climate!). IMO, there NEEDS to be some 'hurt' to using drugs, or drinking too much. People who are mentally ill should be getting treatment for it, residential if they can't function on their own. But providing too much comfort to people who won't deal with their problems just encourages them to continue in them. When we lived in Tok, I worked for a while at the little grocery store, and there was a group of guys who hung out nearby (sometimes on the step of the store; we had to call the cops to have them removed once in a while, because the tourists were afraid to just walk around them). Their little campsite was called the wino camp. The native guys had a regular paycheck coming in whether they worked or not, and were pretty much there all the time in the summer. In winter they moved back in with relatives. The white guys had to work enough to earn money to buy their booze, so they'd be there for a few days, then work for a few weeks, and so on. In other words, they were choosing to be there. They were capable of working, of getting dried out. They chose to spend their earnings on booze and be homeless. I don't think there is any up-side to enabling that kind of behavior.

    Kathleen
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  3. #3
    Kathleen is their also a "failed in" problem?

    I heard a really rural Alaskan Sherif interviewed decades ago (when the show Northern Exposure was the rage) who said that one of the biggest problems he had in his village was people who:

    "Failed in Los Angeles, failed in San Francisco, failed in Portland, failed in Seattle, failed in Anchorage and then ending up failing in my town."

    His town/village was "the end of the line" so there were no roads going any further out into the hinterlands and no real way for "the failures" to afford to get back out to a larger city either (too expensive and impossible in Winter).

    I thought it was very interesting - he also said his town was one of several used as a model for the mythical town in Northern Exposure and that on the plus side they really did have a lot of similar "town charaters" but the downside not shown by Hollywood was the "failed ins" or as you observed the Summer wino/homeless camps.
    expatriate Californian living in rural Ireland with husband, dogs, horses. garden and many, many cats

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    10,837
    Quote Originally Posted by Melodi View Post
    Kathleen is their also a "failed in" problem?

    I heard a really rural Alaskan Sherif interviewed decades ago (when the show Northern Exposure was the rage) who said that one of the biggest problems he had in his village was people who:

    "Failed in Los Angeles, failed in San Francisco, failed in Portland, failed in Seattle, failed in Anchorage and then ending up failing in my town."

    His town/village was "the end of the line" so there were no roads going any further out into the hinterlands and no real way for "the failures" to afford to get back out to a larger city either (too expensive and impossible in Winter).

    I thought it was very interesting - he also said his town was one of several used as a model for the mythical town in Northern Exposure and that on the plus side they really did have a lot of similar "town charaters" but the downside not shown by Hollywood was the "failed ins" or as you observed the Summer wino/homeless camps.
    I hadn't heard the term 'failed in,' but it's accurate. We noticed that, too -- that a lot of people were in Alaska (specifically the bush, where we were even though we were on the highway) because that was as far as they could go. It was the end of the line. Lots of weird characters up there because they've run out of places to go. Lots of dysfunctional characters. Lots of nice, normal people, too, but I think Alaska has more than their share of dysfunctional, weird, addicted, on-the-run-from-the-law types.

    Kathleen

    ETA: Most of them aren't homeless, I should clarify. But I do have some stories I could tell....the young man who had made himself a 'home' out of brush and plastic in Mentasta Pass. We met him while standing on the asphalt runway at Tanacross, waiting to see who would be chosen for a fire-fighting crew headed for northern California. The young man, who had already spent one winter living in his totally inadequate shelter, rather desperately told us that he'd only had $200 in income so far that year; he really needed the fire-fighting job. The crew chief chose my husband instead (we think because he saw our three small daughters standing with him); I never saw that young man again, and have often wondered what happened to him, and wished I'd thought to offer him some help (sadly, I was focused on my husband who was about to be away from us for several weeks).

    The really nice older guy who worked at the truck stop and sold his absolutely gorgeous paintings from the cafe walls -- turned out there was a warrant out for him; he ended up having to go back to California and serve some time (he was told, before he left, that he was very welcome to come back).

    The parents with a daughter the same age as my girls who moved into a cabin near us and would barely even talk to anyone; they eventually, reluctantly, let their daughter play with my girls, since we lived just around the corner. Never did figure out what their problem was, but obviously hiding something.

    The older woman, living in her car, who pulled into town without enough money to make it across the border into Canada -- Tok is the last town other than the Indian village of Northway before the Canadian border. Since our church was the only church in town visible from the main road, we got most of the people in need of assistance, and we ended up taking this woman home with us for a night -- or part of one. She was so weird that I was worried about keeping her in the same house with my kids so we gave her some blankets and food and took her back to town; she slept in her car for several nights, until we were able to get ahold of her son and he flew up to Alaska to get her. We checked on her daily, and -- while it was early October -- it wasn't cold enough to be dangerous with proper bedding. But definitely mental health problems there.

    I could go on, but those were just the ones I happened to know personally.

    I forgot one -- the Mormon guy who moved to Tok with his wife and her 'sister' (sister wife). He had four kids with his first wife and a baby or two with the second wife. They were really nice people, and I don't think anyone in Tok really cared all that much about their living situation, but some woman was keeping track of them and hounding him because evidently he'd tried to persuade her daughter to join his harem. When she found out where they were, she wrote a letter to the editor of the Fairbanks newspaper, and they decamped in the middle of the night. I don't approve of polygamy, even though it was practiced in the Bible; God tolerated it, but He did not and does not approve of it. But I still think that family should have waited a bit before they ran -- I suspect that they would have been fine if they'd just stayed there. On the other hand, they had a nice-looking young son just a couple of years older than my oldest daughter, and I don't think I would have wanted one of my girls to marry into that!
    Last edited by Freeholder; 09-22-2019 at 09:35 AM.
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  5. #5
    The more money they spend on the problem, the worse it will get.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Location
    NW Ohio
    Posts
    5,417
    I don't think it was always this bad...I feel those people have lost all respect for themselves, and wallow in self-pity most of the time.
    A socialist will trample over one hundred poor people just for the chance to throw a rock at a rich man.

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Countrybumpkin View Post
    I don't think it was always this bad...I feel those people have lost all respect for themselves, and wallow in self-pity most of the time.
    It IS the current dominant culture.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2017
    Location
    1 tank of fuel from potential chaos
    Posts
    3,880
    Quote Originally Posted by Faroe View Post
    The more money they spend on the problem, the worse it will get.
    QFT. Charity should come from a church or a community. Not through government.
    Atheists are free to have a "church of the right here and now".
    Government enables. Enabling doesn't equate to caring. Jmo
    "You are allowed to be disappointed but not surprised"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    Location
    Southwest (enjoy it!)
    Posts
    4,666
    Every one of us make decisions all through our lives. Sometimes we all make bad decisions. Also sometimes each of us get unlucky. But whether it is bad luck or bad decisions or a combination we all have to take responsibility for ourselves.

  10. #10
    Are these US citizens? Yes. Do you see illegals or other foreign nationals in this situation? No.

    Did these people "fail in" or were they "priced out" of sustainable wages?

    None of the answers to these questions get at the immediate problem and I have a feeling that we are going to have open up good mental health facilities or other custodial arrangements for some but the long term solution is to be sure that our own people have a floor beneath which it is unlikely that they would fall through.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    10,837
    Quote Originally Posted by Plain Jane View Post
    Are these US citizens? Yes. Do you see illegals or other foreign nationals in this situation? No.

    Did these people "fail in" or were they "priced out" of sustainable wages?

    None of the answers to these questions get at the immediate problem and I have a feeling that we are going to have open up good mental health facilities or other custodial arrangements for some but the long term solution is to be sure that our own people have a floor beneath which it is unlikely that they would fall through.
    The problem is that if you give people who are *capable of working* 'a floor beneath which it is unlikely that they would fall through,' all too often they are happy to just accept that and quit trying to do anything for themselves. And then someone has a pity party and says, oh, that's too harsh, they deserve better than that, and they up the level of care being provided, and the people have even LESS incentive to pick themselves up and take care of themselves instead of letting someone else do it all for them. It's harsh, yes, but sometimes you have to be a bit harsh and shake people up. It's called 'tough love' for a reason. If we individually or as a culture enable dependency of any kind, guess what we are going to get more of?

    Kathleen
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    N. Minnesota
    Posts
    14,005
    A lot of these people are just simply non-functional in normal society. Some are always gonna fall through the cracks and live (or die) on the edges. I personally see nothing wrong with humane institutionalization in some sort of self-sustaining situation (work farm) but others disagree.

    Makes sense to give a hand to those who want help, but many really don't. You can't save the whole world.

    There are a lot of Native homeless around here, as in AK. No engagement/solutions coming from the tribes that I can see. A lot are also vets, no real engagement from the VA or Veteran's orgs like the VFW or American Legion posts. These are entities some of the homeless categories may be more willing to take help from, too. Oh well.
    Last edited by WalknTrot; 09-22-2019 at 11:00 AM.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Freeholder View Post
    The problem is that if you give people who are *capable of working* 'a floor beneath which it is unlikely that they would fall through,' all too often they are happy to just accept that and quit trying to do anything for themselves. And then someone has a pity party and says, oh, that's too harsh, they deserve better than that, and they up the level of care being provided, and the people have even LESS incentive to pick themselves up and take care of themselves instead of letting someone else do it all for them. It's harsh, yes, but sometimes you have to be a bit harsh and shake people up. It's called 'tough love' for a reason. If we individually or as a culture enable dependency of any kind, guess what we are going to get more of?

    Kathleen
    I probably didn't explain it well enough. I didn't mean that the "floor " would be additional social services. Far from it! In fact it will probably take a good ten years or so to change the culture so that "services " are not seen as the go to solution. It means structurally changing our economy from Wall St. back to Main St. It would mean having capital investments in production here instead of offshore. Even social welfare programs like housing vouchers have priced the low level workers out of being able to save for their own starter homes.

    I see this as a national security problem as well. We aren't getting the recruits we need in the military because a lot of the young have little stake in the present system. Not to mention off-shoring our tech secrets.

    It's a structural problem.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    10,837
    Quote Originally Posted by Plain Jane View Post
    I probably didn't explain it well enough. I didn't mean that the "floor " would be additional social services. Far from it! In fact it will probably take a good ten years or so to change the culture so that "services " are not seen as the go to solution. It means structurally changing our economy from Wall St. back to Main St. It would mean having capital investments in production here instead of offshore. Even social welfare programs like housing vouchers have priced the low level workers out of being able to save for their own starter homes.

    I see this as a national security problem as well. We aren't getting the recruits we need in the military because a lot of the young have little stake in the present system. Not to mention off-shoring our tech secrets.

    It's a structural problem.
    I think that your idea of what should happen is a good one. Unfortunately, the people we are talking about generally aren't low-level workers (unless they are desperate enough for a drink or a fix that they have no choice but to work for a while). They are addicts or mentally ill who want to drink or do drugs more than they want to have anything resembling a 'normal' life. WalknTrot's idea of a work farm with supervised work is probably one of the best solutions; unfortunately, the so-called 'compassionate' party disagrees.

    Kathleen

    The thing is, there's confusion between people who are homeless because of their behaviors, whether that is drinking or drugs, or they are mentally ill, and people who are homeless because they are out of work and out of money. People in the latter category usually don't have major behavior issues that will keep friends and relatives from being willing to house them for a while. People who don't have major behavior issues, but are just down on their luck, usually are quickly able to find work of some kind and get off the streets. They don't *want* to be there, so they work to get out of it. I've been in that category -- living out of my truck for a few months, then sleeping on a couch in a friend's family room for a few more months, then living with my grandmother for several years (helping her out as well as us). I worked most of that time, though it was a bit tough to manage with my handicapped daughter. I saved, and inherited a bit from my grandmother, and now own this little old farmhouse on a couple of acres free and clear (except for property taxes, of course). I believe there are others on this forum who have been in similar situations and managed to work their way out of them. The reason why we were able to work our way out was because we weren't handicapped by those bad behaviors, or by mental illness. Those who are handicapped by bad behaviors or mental illness could benefit from the structured environment of a work farm, IMO.
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Freeholder View Post
    The problem is that if you give people who are *capable of working* 'a floor beneath which it is unlikely that they would fall through,' all too often they are happy to just accept that and quit trying to do anything for themselves. And then someone has a pity party and says, oh, that's too harsh, they deserve better than that, and they up the level of care being provided, and the people have even LESS incentive to pick themselves up and take care of themselves instead of letting someone else do it all for them. It's harsh, yes, but sometimes you have to be a bit harsh and shake people up. It's called 'tough love' for a reason. If we individually or as a culture enable dependency of any kind, guess what we are going to get more of?

    Kathleen
    Exactly. It is a cultural problem, not a money problem. Other People's Money - no matter how much is thrown at it, is never going to fix that.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Freeholder View Post
    I think that your idea of what should happen is a good one. Unfortunately, the people we are talking about generally aren't low-level workers (unless they are desperate enough for a drink or a fix that they have no choice but to work for a while). They are addicts or mentally ill who want to drink or do drugs more than they want to have anything resembling a 'normal' life. WalknTrot's idea of a work farm with supervised work is probably one of the best solutions; unfortunately, the so-called 'compassionate' party disagrees.

    Kathleen
    I didn't see Walkn Trot's post. It must have come in while I was posting, but yes, that is an idea that I could get behind.

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by Faroe View Post
    The more money they spend on the problem, the worse it will get.
    Yes - this is true. The problem is the fact that tax payers have been shamed into having their children's food, housing and well being taken by the government to give to those who are "homeless".
    The people of the United States are the rightful masters of both Congress and the Courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution. Abraham Lincoln, 1859

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    Location
    Green County, Kentucky
    Posts
    10,837
    Quote Originally Posted by Gercarson View Post
    Yes - this is true. The problem is the fact that tax payers have been shamed into having their children's food, housing and well being taken by the government to give to those who are "homeless".
    What's even worse is that the tax payers have been shamed into leaving the 'homeless' loose on the streets, where they pose a threat to those children, and where they pose a health threat to everyone (diseases, dirty needles, feces in public places, etc.). Their own lives are also in danger as long as they stay on the streets. There are better solutions to the problem. They weren't ideal in the past, and they won't be ideal in the future, but they were and will be better than letting communities be overrun with dysfunctional people who soak up tax dollars and make the community unsafe for everyone, including themselves.

    Kathleen
    Behold, these are the mere edges of His ways, and how small a whisper we hear of Him.
    Job 26:14

    wickr ID freeholder45

  19. #19
    They should be given a plane or bus ticket to California. Children who are homeless , by themselves, should be placed with social services. To reunite with family or go to Foster Care. The only state help should be for parents with children, and then only short term to get them past emergencies.

    This idea that we are supposed to care for the drug addicts for life with tax dollars, only makes it worse.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts


NOTICE: Timebomb2000 is an Internet forum for discussion of world events and personal disaster preparation. Membership is by request only. The opinions posted do not necessarily represent those of TB2K Incorporated (the owner of this website), the staff or site host. Responsibility for the content of all posts rests solely with the Member making them. Neither TB2K Inc, the Staff nor the site host shall be liable for any content.

All original member content posted on this forum becomes the property of TB2K Inc. for archival and display purposes on the Timebomb2000 website venue. Said content may be removed or edited at staff discretion. The original authors retain all rights to their material outside of the Timebomb2000.com website venue. Publication of any original material from Timebomb2000.com on other websites or venues without permission from TB2K Inc. or the original author is expressly forbidden.



"Timebomb2000", "TB2K" and "Watching the World Tick Away" are Service Mark℠ TB2K, Inc. All Rights Reserved.