Letter to the Editor

Helping the homeless

Santa MargaritaJune 2, 2014 

Many thanks to Councilman Dan Carpenter for his courageous letter on “traditional homeless shelters versus permanent housing” — spoken like a true advocate. The National Law Center for Poverty and Homelessness, The 100,000 Homes Campaign, the U.S. Interagency Council on Homelessness and dozens of other group studies all support “Housing First” as their best practice model.

Also to be commended is San Luis Obispo police Chief Steve Gesell and his officers in downtown San Luis Obispo who speak with local unhoused people who have been on the streets for years. After showing interest in them and talking with them about changing their lives, some are now in clean and sober living programs. We are grateful for this new approach.

Thanks also go to Transitions Mental Health for its efforts in upgrading an old building on Johnson Avenue to serve as housing for those suffering from mental issues. What a great idea!

Here’s hoping that all leaders in our community will have the audacity to stand up for what they believe in and put it out there for all to see, because we can reduce homelessness in our town, in our time.

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