Friday News Roundup: Having our Voices Heard

written by Anna Blasco
April 15, 2011

The biggest news item this week occurred when debate over the federal budget finally ended on Thursday when Congress passed the spending bill that cut $38 billion from FY 2011. (Stay tuned, on Monday we will discuss the bill in greater depth.)

Throughout the debate process one thing remained clear to us at the Alliance – homelessness advocates will have their voices heard.

Cathy ten Broeke from the Office to End Homelessness in Minneapolis and Hennepin Countycomposed a powerful argument for why ending homelessness is not only the right thing to do, but also the fiscally responsible thing to do.

Another excellent opinion piece was authored this week by Former Sen. Tom Daschle and the Hon. Linda Hall Daschle. The Daschle’s wrote about the strides that N Street Village – where Alliance staff members volunteer from time to time – have made toward ending homelessness, in particular, N Street’s successful housing model that integrates housing and health services for women.

On the topic of women, there was an NPR story about a report by Wider Opportunities for Women that found the minimum income workers need to attain basic economic security is about three times more than the federal poverty line. What was the biggest expense among the majority of people studied? Unsurprisingly, housing and utilities.

Finally, a few other stories of note:

  • Results from the 2011 point in time counts from Metropolitan Washington, D.C. are out. Overall, there were 11,988 homeless people, up from 11,774 last year. Nearly a third were children and 5,315 were in families, an increase from 4,995 last year.
  • Can foundations end homelessness? The organization Funders Together says yes, but with a smart approach that focuses on systems change rather than managing homelessness.
  • Have you been helped by a federal homelessness assistance program? Half in Ten and the Coalition on Human Needs wants to hear your story. For the record, we love this video from veteran Michael Starnes about the HUD-VASH program.
  • Finally, HPRP is making a difference for 102 people in San Diego who recently moved into long-term housing.

Did we miss anything important? Let us know in the comments!

Image courtesy of Jon Bradley Photography