real homeless count

These numbers were put out by “My Road Leads Home” documentary and River City Media. They are a realistic number and explanation of our homeless situation in Spokane and Spokane County.

As a person on the ground daily these numbers are legit and what we see everyday. PIT is not an actual depiction of the truth. All homeless are not what you see downtown and the “group” that frequents our criminal justice system. The “hidden” homeless is what I refer to them as. Women, children, families, working men and women, dv survivors….etc.

If we don’t recognize the depth of which this is effecting our communities we are destined to repeat and exasperate the problem. The longer we ignore it the worse it gets. This should constitute an emergency in our cities. We are failing this group in actually providing solutions. Most people only know what they hear or get a glimpse of, so let me lay them out for you.

I hear things like there are services available. Yes there are but until basic needs are met they can not access those services. Or even focus on those things. May be upsetting but science proves this to be fact. Using data from Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs.

Trauma is one of the leading causes of addiction that plagues our entire community and most others in our country not just our homeless. If you eliminate all people experiencing homelessness that will still leave 19 million with the same issue.

We need to start addressing the problem from all angles not just blaming homeless for this ravaging through their community as well. People are not getting bussed into our city to be homeless on a regular basis. This is not a thing. Even if it were how would anyone be able to determine who gets to live and who will die on our streets? Moses Lake has no services so I believe that’s a mayor to mayor issue not a community issue.

We need to realize the extent of what we are suggesting. Let’s keep people out in 20 degree weather with no where to go because we don’t agree with their choices or circumstances. Every day this week all beds have been full including the 60 beds House of Charity opened up by 9pm. If you are a family there is no where to go! Salvation Army says they have a couple spots but I have 2 that have been on their list for 4 months. Still homeless. No beds anywhere! We as a city will spend the money either way in emergency response and police calls or shelter people from the weather. I guess it is about where we should spend our money.

Jail sounds good according to some. 40,000 dollars for ineffective treatment is what it costs a year per person just to release them to the same conditions in which they came from. Forcing people into treatment does NOT and never has worked clearly. Just a side note: all homeless are not addicts. 10,000 dollars to shelter them and truly fix the issues that caused them to be homeless so they do not repeat the cycle. We need to focus on REAL solutions. Which ever end you are on this seems reasonable, human and right to pursue. What kind of city do you want to live in? One that addresses the problems with solutions or one that focuses on pushing the problem down the road and revisiting this year after year wasting money on temporary solutions, when the numbers double? Or triple? Vote!

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