OutsideIN: 1,000 Safe by 2015
It’s now 2015 and while the homeless among vets might have been on the decline the cities renewal project has probably pushed a lot more into the label or category of being homeless
“Nobody should have to go through what I went through on the streets. When the shelters fill up and people are left outside, they become vulnerable. We all need to act together to end homelessness because we are all connected.” – Susan Russell, Real Change Vendor
Fact: The 2014 One Night Homeless Count found 3,123 people sleeping outside in King County after the shelters were filled. This was a 14% increase in the unsheltered count from the previous year.
Fact: The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction’s Homeless Education counts at least 6,188 homeless students in King County, a more than 18% increase from 2011-2012.
Fact: According to the City of Seattle’s “Role of Shelter” report, more than 600 non-disabled single adults have languished in emergency shelter for six months or longer.
This is unacceptable. Strategic investments in the following areas will create the new housing and shelter capacity we need to get more people inside now:
Fund Additional Shelter: The more than 3,000 women, men and children that are living outside in King County on any given night deserve an emergency response. Invest immediately in additional shelter to bring at least 500 more people inside before January 2015.
Support Community Partnerships: Provide funding to expand partnerships between faith communities, civic groups and service providers to get more people off the street and ensure that no child or family sleeps outside.
Meet Immediate Basic Needs: Create a flexible discretionary fund for caseworkers to reunite families with bus tickets, get cars out of impound, or take other actions that quickly and inexpensively get people off the street.
Support Creative Housing Options: Provide financial incentives and support to private landlords and homeowners to match people experiencing homelessness with community members who have space to share.
We hereby call upon the Governing Board of the Committee to End Homelessness and our elected representatives in Seattle and King County to allocate the resources required to make 1,000 more unsheltered homeless people safe by 2015.