Solving Homelessness: Rehousing Families
Creative Commons image by Flickr user Daniel Ramirez
A humanitarian crisis has persisted on our streets for years and seems to have worsened as housing prices and rents have skyrocketed. Across the Bay Area, high-profile government and nonprofit initiatives have sought more effective ways of serving the homeless. But are they enough?
These stories, from the spring 2018 issue, follow on two recent special reports: From summer 2017, Which Way Home?, which looked into city government’s efforts to clear homeless encampments from the streets by putting people into navigation centers and shelters (or more often on buses to family or friends out of town). And the fall 2017 issue, Ideas For Ending a Crisis, a package of stories exploreing ideas about how to do things differently to address the humanitarian crisis on our streets, even if they are only on the cusp of mainstream consideration.
This time, the focus is on city programs.
The spring 2018 print edition of the Public Press is now available at select locations.
1. Most Homeless Families Rehoused Out of City Under Rent-Assistance Programs
A San Francisco initiative to help homeless families find affordable apartments and assist them in paying the rent is sending the majority of them out of the city because of the high cost and shortage of housing. The fates of hundreds are unknown after subsidies expire, and some end up homeless again amid strains from dislocation.
Published March 6, 2018
2. Rebuttal to Beyond Chron Criticism of Public Press Report on Residential Hotel Vacancies
In early March, from his blog Beyond Chron, Tenderloin Housing Clinic Executive Director Randy Shaw belatedly referred to Joe Eskenazi’s Fall 2017 Public Press cover story about vacancies in single-room occupancy hotels as “extremely misleading” and “false.” Joe was disappointed, but not surprised. And he is not alone.
Published March 7, 2018
3. City Rolls Out Tech Platform to Improve — and Ration — Shelter AND Housing
The city has begun rolling out a new technology platform that officials say will better help the homeless population by giving priority for shelter and housing to those with the greatest need. But the ONE System also functions as a form of rationing of scarce affordable housing. It began in June with families, with plans for single adults by summer and youths by the fall.
Published March 8, 2018
4. Hardworking Family Struggles to Escape Homelessness
City native Victoria Ortiz’s path to homelessness began in the East Bay more than two years ago when she was pregnant, working at a Staples and subletting a room. But then a housemate stopped forwarding the rent to the landlord, and everyone was evicted. This is the story of her determination to find stable housing for her family while living at a shelter in San Francisco.
Published March 8, 2018
ABOUT THIS REPORTING PROJECT
REPORTING: Rob Waters
EDITING: Michael Winter
COPY CHIEF: Sherman Turntine
COPY EDITING: Michele Anderson, Richard Knee
GRAPHICS: Reid Brown
PHOTOGRAPHY: Rob Waters
ONLINE: John Angelico
This project was made possible by donations from Public Press members and the San Francisco Foundation