So...after a short break, I reopen with a shameless excuse as to why you should take 5 minutes once a week or so to read this thing. You won't find many people with this perspective - so deeply imbedded in the war on poverty and family homelessness in middle America - saying the kind of crazy stuff that I say.
1. ABANDON. Not tweak, modify, realign or retool (the new word our federal government is using). Knock, knock. You know that battle plan that we've used to fight homelessness for the past 50 years? Yeah that one, the one that has been managing symptoms and containing impacts with dependency and entitlement programs which has resulted in more homeless people today than ever before....IT HAS NOT WORKED!
2. REDESIGN. So after we throw out the old battle plan. The one that is spending billions of dollars on managing the symptoms of homelessness and creating more homeless people, we need to replace it with a different battle plan. One that has the capacity to crush homelessness. I like to use the word "crush" because when I served as U .S. Marine Corp Sergeant we would say real bad sounding ego driven 25 year old stupid stuff like "we crushed the enemy". I guess it made us feel like a team of super heroes but what I think it really meant was that the enemy would not be returning....anytime soon. Likewise, we need to make this so that the impacts of homelessness on our families, our neighbors and our communities never come back. Stop messing around. Bring out the big guns that are capable of moving people into permanent solutions. You know my preference is the Solutions University model because it provides all the access to permanent solutions that a person needs to acquire the skills, knowledge and resources needed to solve homelessness, permanently. But every community is different. Unfetter the change makers, bring on the social entrepreneur, fire up the beyond the soup bowl activator. Just do it and watch what happens.
NOTE: A quick note on the redesign thing. BandAids come in many different sizes, shapes and colors. Be wary of the one that looks like a house.
3. REIMAGINE. Hundreds of thousands of Americans not homeless anymore and OUT of the system. Hundreds of millions of dollars freed up to use on other more pressing issues that our government can....hopefully put to good use. Billions of dollars into the economy because thousands of people are off the dole and on the tax rolls. Good neighbors. Healthy families. Healthy communities.
Lets stay in touch...