Fix Homelessness How to rebuild human lives

Fix Homelessness

Most Cities’ Responses To Homelessness Actually Enable Even More Homelessness

$837,000. That’s how much one single unit to house one homeless person is costing taxpayers in Los Angeles.  We’ll never be able to house 40,000 people in this city if we are spending nearly one million dollars to build one unit of housing.— Karen Bass (@KarenBassLA) February 26, 2022 The $837,000 units being built in L.A. are part of a $1.2 billion “Housing First” program to build “affordable” housing. But the city can’t build fast enough to keep up. Despite vast amounts of money and record-level housing placements, the city’s homeless population keeps growing. This sad situation is another indication that good money dedicated to bad policy not only goes to waste, it makes the problem worse. Housing First

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Street Report

from Jonathan Choe

Massive Clean Up at Woodland Park

Eve of Massive Sweep Tuesday morning, Woodland Park will finally be cleared. Campers are scrambling to leave with help of outreach workers. This may be largest homeless encampment sweep under @MayorofSeattle. Area so massive, it is scheduled to happen over several days. On the Move @SeattleParks giving homeless campers rides out of Woodland Park today before Tuesday’s sweep. Several gracious campers spoke to me about their next steps. Several people like “Cassandra” have found a place to stay with the help of city outreach workers. #Seattle Not Again Earlier today, I was at Woodland Park trying to document this sprawling homeless encampment before it’s cleared. Out of nowhere comes this far left activist with “Stop the Sweeps Seattle.” She’s a Read More ›

RV Parking Double Standards

@SDOTtraffic is supposed to be ticketing RV’s in violation of the 72 hour rule. But if it’s considered someone’s home, all the tickets in the world won’t get it moved.

Stores Implement Counter-Shoplifting Measures

Cold Case @QFCGrocery locations in #Seattle’s Capitol Hill, sick of being targeted by criminals. The company now taking matters into own hands, resorting to locks on ice cream fridges. @BrandiKruse and I rap about on going issues in city, and stories that still need to be told. With Brandi Kruse on Undivided

Overwhelmed by Graffiti, Seattle Citizens Step In To Help

Seattle is so overwhelmed by graffiti that it can take the city's five-member task force several weeks to respond to a report of graffiti on public property. Some Seattle citizens have begun spending their own time and money to help clean up their neighborhoods.

Housing First Is Right: Affordable Housing Matters

Housing First is a misguided policy, but it is not wholly wrong. Affordable housing does matter. “The rising cost of housing has been a driver of homelessness, especially in communities where living costs are highest, and especially for families experiencing homelessness,” explained the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness (USICH) in 2020. In October 2020, the USICH released a strategic plan titled, “Expanding the Toolbox: The Whole-of-Government Response to Homelessness.” The plan challenged the Housing First policy that was federally implemented in 2013. While unsheltered homelessness was on the decline from 2007 to 2013, it rose by 20.5 percent in between the years 2014 and 2019, shortly after Housing First was implemented as a national strategy to

Our Mission

Discovery Institute’s Fix Homelessness initiative offers innovative research and compassionate solutions to the growing crisis of homelessness, addiction, and mental illness facing many American cities. Our mission is to serve as a resource for policy leaders, business owners, and neighborhood organizations trying to meaningfully reduce homelessness and to help those suffering realize their full human potential.

[not] anything helps

Discovery Institute’s Center on Wealth & Poverty is leading a research project on homelessness, addiction, and mental illness. Our mission is to help city leaders, business owners, and neighborhood organizations meaningfully reduce homeless and improve lives. 


Action Plan

Our action plan for small and medium-sized cities has gained the attention of mayors, state legislators, and White House officials. We have developed a philosophy of “compassionate enforcement” that balances the provision of services with the maintenance of public order. In our report, we demonstrate solutions that have worked in communities across the United States.

Legal Guide

We have created a legal guide for cities to maintain compliance with the Martin v Boise decision. The guide outlines best practices for compliance and provides models for successful ordinances that balance enforcement, housing, and legal requirements. The guide is written by Joseph Tartakovsky, attorney for the City of Boise in the Martin v Boise case.

Case Studies

We have created case studies of cities that have delivered cost-effective and rapid results on homelessness. We’ll show you how San Diego built an emergency shelter and moved 700 people off the streets, how Burien eliminated camping in public parks, and how Modesto reduced quality-of-life crimes associated with homelessness by 83 percent — all within 60 days. 

Download the Resources


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