Thank you for the April 16 front-page article “Families fault D.C. shelter system,” which laid bare the terrible hardship faced by the District’s homeless families and ongoing violations of the legal right to shelter. Also critical is the larger context in which this crisis is playing out. The mother in the family highlighted by the article held a steady job, and her partner was sometimes employed, yet the family was unable to avoid homelessness.
While each family’s circumstances are unique, this much is clear: In the District, and in many communities around the country, escalating housing costs are severely squeezing many working families; for the poorest, homelessness is often the result. Instead of wasting resources on trying to “triage” desperate families, and in the process shifting blame to them by questioning whether they are “truly” homeless, the District should focus on creating housing that is truly affordable for even its lowest-income residents.
Maria Foscarinis, Washington
Indeed! By refusing to focus on this major cause of homelessness in America – we will NEVER end this devastating and pervasive abuse of basic human rights – the human right to adequate housing! Maria is member of the National Advisory Council of Partnering for Change – and is telling it like it is!
Tanya Tull, President/CEO, Partnering for Change