Challenge in Getting Veterans Off the Street

Story Illustrates Hurdles and Success

Woman VeteranOn September 17, 2014, National Pubic Radio (NPR)’s Quil Lawrence profiled work being done in San Diego to end veterans homelessness veteran by veteran.

Lawrence interviewed Daniel Martin, a veteran who he met at the city’s annual “Stand Down” event. “Stand Down” provides an opportunity for homeless veterans to gather over a few days to connect with services and housing.

Martin tells his story of how ended up living on the streets with no one left to turn to for help.

But he remained hopeful his future saying, “Once you have a place to live … you can start to live life like a real human being.”

Homeless research expert Dennis Culhane emphasized the importance of housing and employment making the case for the Housing First model.

“A lot of these younger veterans are employable” and he emphasized “getting people back into the workforce and not stuck in the homeless system.”

Said Culhane.

As the story closes, Martin, who had previously expressed reservations about some of the housing options offered to him, was with the help of the local Veterans Administration and its staff living in housing.

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