The big news first: the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development reported today that the number of people experiencing homelessness increased one percent homelessness from 2009 to 2010. For more in-depth information on this report, check out our website.
The Alliance estimated, back in 2009, that homelessness would increase dramatically as a result of the recession without effective interventions – interventions like the Homelessness Prevention and Rapid Re-Housing Program (HPRP), a stimulus-funded program aimed at curbing homelessness resulting from the recession, as well as community efforts to adopt housing-focused strategies and homelessness prevention methods.
But we’re not out of the woods yet. As Nan says in the press release, diminishing state, local, and federal resources keep people at0risk of homelessness. But this is shaping up to be an interesting debate about how best to use these limited resources.
In other news: The Times Free Press in Chattanooga, TN finds that investing in housing and supportive services for people with metal illness keeps people out of jail and saves money on costly and unnecessary stinks in jail.
The Philadelphia Tribune looks at cuts to housing programs for people with HIV/AIDS.
The Arizona Republic reports that cuts to a cash-assistance program for very low-income families, the Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) program, could end up costing the state more when these families find themselves on the street and in need of more costly services.
There are communities who have already decided that investing in people before they become homeless is a cost effect solution. The Telegram in Worchester, Massachusetts, writes:
“Initiatives like the state’s diversion program, that prevent homelessness rather than wait for it to happen, contribute to the encouraging result that homelessness in Worcester County has decreased by nearly 7 percent despite a time of high unemployment and housing foreclosures and a tough economy.”
Finally, the Washington Post turned its lenses to another group feeling the burden of tight budgets – those responsible for doling out these limited and continually shrinking resources.