Ross lays out a few ways that we can address the underlying causes of poverty and homelessness:
Align homeless and mainstream services;
Support the funding of affordable housing; and
Increase economic instability and address income inequality.
Despite recent progress in decreasing homelessness across the country, people usually become homeless for the simple reason that they are unable to pay their rent. There is a severe shortage of low-income housing in the United States. In fact, only 25% of eligible households have access to rental vouchers and that other 75% must sit on long waiting lists. And housing prices continue to increase faster than household incomes.
“If we truly believe that no one should experience homelessness, we must continue to invest in preventative measures now in order to avoid the higher costs associated with crisis interventions down the road.”
This is important message for Congress as critical housing programs face further cuts due to funding decisions and sequestration. Increased funding for affordable housing and homelessness prevention in FY 2014 are necessary.