Have you heard about Utah’s Housing First program? Well you should have. Everyone is always going on about how State and Local governments can do nothing...well Utah is proving them wrong.
In 2005 Utah figured out that it's homeless population was costing them a lot of money. So did they run them out of the state? Make it illegal to feed them? Jail them?
No. In 2005 they initiated the Utah Housing First Program designed to get the homeless off the street, into apartments and get them assigned social workers. These apartments are FREE. As long as the tenants take care of their personal and shared housing areas, get along with the other tenants, case managers, and property managers, they keep the apartments. They don’t even have to go into treatment programs or abstain from drugs or alcohol...just be good people and take care of themselves and others. The case workers do work with them to help them become self-sufficient, but if they fail...they STILL keep the apartment.
The result? Homelessness in Utah has dropped 78%. Yes....78%. And their goal is to eliminate (yes...ELIMINATE) homelessness in Utah by 2015.