I applaud the City’s efforts to address homelessness, thus far. Many people have worked very hard to develop the Homeless Strategy Framework.
I support the continued evolution of this process. Bringing in other stakeholders to the process, including more homeless (or previously homeless) people, as well as a few more people from the community-at-large (who have no agenda other than ending homelessness) will be worthwhile.
While I believe that starting with a housing strategy is one reasonable first step, I think it is vital to be sure that the underpinnings to provide job training and placement, mental health, and addiction services are properly resourced.
The Bridge House Ready-to-Work program provides transitional housing and job training for formerly homeless individuals. I support programs like this, that provide a pathway out of homelessness.
Besides the plan that the City has underway, I also support soliciting public input for solutions that will help homeless people and mitigate some of the issues that impact public spaces. We can’t avoid the fact that Boulder has finite resources and infrastructure, so I would support prioritizing assistance for Boulder’s own indigenous chronically homeless populations, while working with other cities and states to ensure that adequate resources are provided in all areas.
Homelessness is a crucial issue. And it is very complicated. Above all, it is a life and death issue for homeless individuals. As a City Council member, I will take this issue very seriously.