Presentation Minutes

League of Women Voters

  • Larry Seaquist -
  • Here to consult us for ideas
  • How can we begin to reduce the homeless problem earlier? (the crowd became hostile as they realized they would lose their jobs helping the homeless if there were no more homeless, and Larry was run out of town on a pole. –ed). 
  • Why, when we are living in an economy that is so wealthy – why does homelessness keep increasing?
  • At the homeless conference, Michael Mirra said that “Homelessness is downstream of everything”
  • We need food, clothes, a house.  We actually have more needs.  We are not a hunter gather society.  We have to have a long education period.  What we need to know keeps changing.  We need to know how to learn.  We need to buy food, so we need an income.  We need to transport and stay connected – seldom can work where we live.   Need to stay connected.
  • Where are we?  Today, most people, despite what the headlines say, are undereducated.  70% of 25 year olds need to have a marketable skill in order to run an economy.  We are at 30% of what we need.  For the first time in American history, kids make less than their parents.  Food and clothing are more expensive than ever.  Inexpensive food is not healthy.  Many people lack adequate healthcare.  Transportation is challenging, internet can be difficult to acquire in many areas.  Society is polarized.  Housing costs are very high. Even in rural economies, housing is very challenging.  Urban areas it is more so. 
  • Many forces are pressing down on the average person.
  • We need to have resilience. 
  • We should have a social safety net.  But our current safety net is full of holes.  We charge high tuition for college.  Welfare is radically cut back.  The new SNAP budget is radically reduced.  The Affordable Care Act is under attack from the congress.  Transit is a challenge – for instance, there no Pierce Transit on Key Peninsula any longer. 
  • So how can we go to a place with less homelessness
  • We have some connections between our homeless response and the other agencies that provide basic services.  Is there a way we can broaden the alerts so that the providers who have contact with folks at risk (in extremes) can get the assistance in all the areas they need help in?  Are there ways in which we can better respond? 
  • We need to broaden our network of informal relationships and then deepen our formal relationships.  (Larry said some great stuff after this, but I missed it somehow. –ed)
  • How would we turn that set of ideas into an action strategy to reduce homelessness. 
  • Want feedback and suggestions on this idea.  If this is a good way to think about this broader problem of homelessness?  Does it open up an action strategy to begin to address homelessness?

Contact Larry with feedback -

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