Homelessness is a solvable problem, not an intractable issue

Homelessness is not an intractable issue. It is a solvable problem that we must acknowledge as a crisis repeating every day, and we must respond with urgency to end it.

Blog post authored by Melanie Lewis Dickerson, MDHI Board President

In recent years, we have witnessed groundbreaking changes in how communities, service providers, and elected officials address homelessness throughout our nation. Where we see the most significant progress is in communities who unify around Housing First innovations and dedicate themselves to coordinating their local systems.

We also see that progress can occur more quickly when communities focus on a single population or when local conditions require us to respond to a crisis. Working in unison toward one large goal, individual differences tend to disappear while strengths are magnified.

As we dive into the next leg of our journey, we should learn from other successful communities and continue to challenge ourselves by:

  • Committing to a shared and measureable aim
  • Being open to learning and testing new ideas
  • Collecting and using real-time data
  • Demonstrating a bias toward action
  • Pivoting when our actions aren’t making a large enough difference
  • Keeping those experiencing homelessness at the forefront of the conversation

We have an opportunity to fundamentally change our community response to homelessness and the lives of those we serve. I look forward to seizing it together.


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Metro Denver Homeless Initiative