NYC de Blasio has declared a
battle against chronic veteran’s homelessness
Generally I write off NYC Bill de Blasio off as an idiot, but every so often the New York City mayor does or says something I can actually get behind; this past week de Blasio has declared a battle against chronic veteran’s homelessness.
“Brave men and women who valiantly protected our nation abroad should never be left without a home”, says de Blasio.
de Blasio isn’t alone in his pledge to battle homelessness; for the past six years cities across the nation have put programs in place to help service members. According to the federal Department of Housing and Urban Development “all known veterans experiencing chronic homelessness have either been housed or are on an immediate path to permanent housing.”
The exception to the Department of Housing’s statement being those who have refused help and housing.
Other cities such as Houston, Las Vegas, New Orleans, and Salt Lake City have also put plans into place to combat homelessness and have all already announced that they have more or less ended veteran homelessness.
The data tells a different story however, with national efforts showing that only 2,000 individuals in 2014 were taken off the streets and put into housing. This means that approximately 48,000 homeless veterans in major cities still live on the streets.
Unfortunately, the data for 2015 progress won’t be available until the end of 2016 (the 2015 data wasn’t available until November 2015).
Don’t get me wrong, I definitely believe that this is all a step in the right direction, but if you ask me we aren’t doing enough. There are cities such as San Francisco which will more openly welcome refugees from other nations with free housing and jobs while they still openly protest US military involvement, and the “military industrial complex”.
Let’s not also skim over the fact that this “battle” also only takes place in major cities, there’s more than a few homeless veterans in non-major metropolitan areas. It’s likely that veterans elsewhere aren’t even on some sort of homeless registry in the state that they currently live (more accurately, are existing in) in.
Homelessness can be combatted by the Army as well, doing a better and more thorough job of ensuring veterans find placement and programs in their potential post-Army residences via the ACAP program.
ACAP in it’s current state is great if you’re trying to sit in an air conditioned room for a few hours, and admittedly a lot of the programs are quite helpful if soldiers take the time to actually make appointments and meet with officials from various offices. The problem is that many of these soldiers don’t care to make appointments, and see the entire process as just another checkmark closer to ETS, furthermore soldiers who so make appointments are all too often told by their units that they aren’t allowed to attend these meetings (as an arms room layout or going to NTC is much more important when you’re getting out in a month).
It is my hope that these cities serve as an example to surrounding areas, creating a program that others aim to emulate. It is also my hope that the tree-huggers in San Francisco and Berkeley find themselves some common sense and start taking care of their own, as they didn’t get the right to picket like a bunch of crybabies through their own sweat and blood. Finally, it’s my hope that units realize sending a guy to NTC and then giving him 10 days to clear post is idiotic, and that maybe the CSM has lost touch with reality.