Even though statistics states the the number of homeless people declined in the recent years, homelessness remains a big problem that needs to be addressed (Katel 243). However, the lacking of a permanent settlement does not root from the inability or lacking of the government to provide housing programs especially to the unfortunate. In fact, the American administration has already launched programs which aimed at reducing homelessness (Katel 243-244). One of the housing policies include the “Housing First” Program which helps homeless people find a permanent housing and aids them in the payments of the rent for some period of time until they are capable to do the payment on their own (Katel 245). The program is subsidized and the subsidies are used for aiding the people or the family for their rental expenses only. Aside from this policy, several other past policies were implemented by the past Administration and all of them proved that housing the homeless people is a difficult problem to deal with. Because of this claim, an important consideration needs to be taken care of, and that is to evaluate whether housing programs are truly efficient, or there are other problems that needs to be solved first, such as the rate of unemployment.
There is an existing relationship between unemployment and homelessness. When it comes to the term homelessness, it refers to those people who do not have any form of settlement, meaning, they cannot even afford to lodge temporarily in boarding houses or dormitories. The existing relationship is that these two variables are highly directed towards one antoher. It only means that homeless people have higher chances to be unemployed and vice-versa (Steen, Mackenzie, & McCormack 7). As such, it is necessary to consider and prioritize the issue of unemployment than the issue of homelessness. This also implies that housing programs are ineffective if the people living in these houses do not have jobs that can sustain their needs, including the housing rent and other related expenses. Also, if these people have decent jobs, the problems that results from homelessness will be alleviated as well. It includes health problems which are more common among adults (Steen, Mackenzie, & McCormack 8). Also, programs such as the “Housing First” policy, which are subsidized by the government, only serves as a source of money for the people. As a result, they will more likely depend on the subsidies rather than on their abilities. Since they have their providers, finding jobs will not become their top priority, and as a result, they will find it difficult to save money for the future and for them to become independent from the housing program. It is not that housing programs are not an appropriate solution for the problem; rather, without the consideration of other important factors, the solution will become incomplete and the main cause of the problem will not be solved. As a result, the problem of homelessness will only become repetitive and worse.
On the other hand, housing programs serve as a starting point especially to those who have no sources of possible income to support their everyday needs. Also, such housing programs aim to provide the support needed by these people to stay in their settlement in a long term basis (US Department of Housing and Urban Development 11), so the government believes that providing houses should be the top priority among all others. However, the benefits are only limited to housing and other important aspects such as the health and education are not provided. To provide these necessities, it is always required to have a decent job for the maintenance of the needs as well as for having a regular source of income.
Katel, Peter. "Housing the Homeless." CQ Researcher (2014): 241-58. Print.
Steen, Adam, David Mackenzie, and Darcy McCormack. "Homelessness and Unemployment: Understanding the Connection and Breaking the Cycle." Swinburne Institute for Social Research (2012): 1-79. Print.
US Department of Housing and Urban Development. "Supportive Housing Program Desk Guide." HUD's Homeless Assistance Programs (2008): 1-147. Print.