We reported on Monday that New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is paying the homeless in New York City to leave, but when we published, we didn’t realize it’s a nationwide failed nationwide policy.
In September, a NY Times article explained the homeless are getting a one-way ticket out of town all over this nation.
They characterize it as a way to give the homeless a new start, near family and friends. It’s a good idea in theory.
San Francisco’s “Homeward Bound” program, started more than a decade ago when Gov. Gavin Newsom was the city’s mayor. He sent them to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, Medford, Oregon, all over.
Seattle is concerned they are getting these homeless from other cities.
The Times writes, “And in Seattle this past week, a member of the King County Council proposed a major investment into the region’s busing efforts, fearing that the city was on the receiving end of homeless busing programs from too many other cities.”
Surveys show the Seattle problem is homegrown.
When Seattle sends their homeless out, they call ahead to make certain there is housing.
The Times found a high failure rate:
“In San Francisco, city officials checking on people in the month after busing them out of town found that while many had found a place to live, others were unreachable, missing, in jail or had already returned to homelessness. Within a year, the city found that one out of every eight bus ticket recipients had returned and sought services in San Francisco once again.”
“In Portland, Ore., a city that has spent three years sending hundreds of its homeless residents around the country, the numbers were worse. Officials found that three months after the departures, nearly half of those transported who could be reached had lost their promised housing.”
Who couldn’t have predicted that?
But, all in all, de Blasio is unique. He gives the homeless a year’s rent, money for furniture and more, along with a one-way ticket. What New York City is finding is most return.
Unfortunately, none of this hits at the core of the problem. The majority, not all, of the homeless are drug addicts, mentally ill, criminals, and many are here illegally. Some just want to live on the street. Those are the core problems not being addressed adequately.