Video: Advocates Critique City, State on Homeless Policy

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Jarquay Abdullah of Picture the Homeless says the city should take more aggressive action to convert vacant land and empty buildings into housing for the homeless.

BRIC

Jarquay Abdullah of Picture the Homeless says the city should take more aggressive action to convert vacant land and empty buildings into housing for the homeless.

 

It wasn’t until the waning days of his mayoralty that Mayor Bloomberg was held accountable for his failure to meet his goal of a major reduction in homelessness. The scrutiny ofMayor de Blasio’s shortcomings came earlier and from multiple sources: A challenge from the governor on shelter security, a tough audit from the city comptroller concerning shelter conditions and some stinging press coverage of homeless encampments.

After a year that saw major changes in this policy area (from the departure of the deputy mayor overseeing human services to the restructuring of the city’s homeless-services bureaucracy to a city promise to build 15,000 units of supportive), how has the situation facing the city’s 58,000 shelter residents and thousands of street homeless changed? And what is the primary obstacle to more progress? (Hint: It has a population of 98,000 and rhymes with “Mallbany,” although the city could be doing more, too.)

To discuss this, BkLive on Wednesday hosted Jeff Foreman and Giselle Routhier, the policy directors, respectively, at Care for the Homeless and the Coalition for the Homeless, and Jarqauy Abdullah, a member of Picture the Homeless.

 

City Limits’ coverage of housing issues is supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation and the New York Community Trust.