Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Homeless could live in vacant homes in many cities, but building contractors would have be prodded to do the heavy lifting

The Washington Post, in an article by Terrence McCoy, notes that Baltimore has 16,000 vacant homes, and asks why the homeless can’t be allowed to move in.  The article is here
Of course, there would have to be an effort to rehab them and bring them up to code, make them safe enough, get electricity and plumbing working, get rid of lead paint and asbestos (particularly). Who would do the work?  Volunteers?  Perspective homeowners by sweat equity?  Habitat for Humanity?
Particularly with toxin abatement, it sounds like the effort would need professional builders and contractors (and abatement is labor-intensive and expensive). Still, this sounds like an effort for which funds could be raised.  But it’s a lot more than a Kickstarter or GoFundMe.  It would take political will.
The same issue could obviously be raised in most cities. How about Detroit?
Other questions about how to help the homeless come up, as with the Community Assistance program I discussed before (March 21).  How to communicate when approached.  Should the more “fortunate” (or inheritors of an estate) be expected to personally house people?  Possible question. A corporate solution like in the newspaper story sounds easier,  You don’t have to “walk the walk”.  

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