Homelessness Solution?

In June we wrote about some innovative approaches Seattle was considering that were already utilized by other major cities to address the homelessness crisis. The Seattle area saw a 19 percent increase from 2015 to 2016 in people living without shelter. Many are morally dismayed at the homelessness problem, others may simply not like encountering so many homeless people, but either way it is safe to say most Seattleites would like this problem addressed. The Seattle Times in an op-ed piece once again highlighted the problem and a possible solution, this time focusing on an affordable option premised on giving the homeless the shelter necessary to enable them to focus on other life issues. The proposed solution is affordable and simple modular-housing units that include bathrooms and minimal cooking facilities which are fully compliant with Seattle building and energy codes. This idea is argued to be “swift, cost-effective, and flexible” and gives those without shelter a permanent and dignified option that unlike tents provides the stability to focus on issues other than basic shelter and amenities. Seattle philanthropist and billionaire Paul Allen has already made a gift of $1 million to examine this option. Like any other proposed solution, it is unlikely to be the only answer, but we’ll soon find out whether this is a viable approach to make a dent in Seattle’s growing homelessness problem.

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