DSA Endorses Charter Amendment for Homelessness Solutions
The last official count of people living unsheltered in Seattle, completed in January 2020, estimated 3,738 individuals are surviving outdoors in parks, playgrounds, sports fields, sidewalks, streets and vehicles. Seattle’s homelessness crisis — declared a state of emergency six years ago — has only worsened during the pandemic.
To meet the historic challenge of bringing thousands of people inside, a new coalition called Compassion Seattle has launched a campaign to make unprecedented investments in housing, health treatment and homeless services through an amendment to the city of Seattle’s charter — essentially the city’s constitution.
The amendment would require the city to provide 2,000 units of emergency and permanent housing within one year of its passage. It also calls for mental health and substance use disorder services. Critically, the amendment would prioritize support for people of color who are more likely to experience homelessness as well as those with high barriers to services and those who are chronically homeless. As services and housing are made available, the city would be required to keep open parks and public spaces.
DSA is a member of the campaign coalition, and the DSA Board of Directors has endorsed the charter amendment. DSA’s involvement builds on our history of advocacy for those most in need.
You can read more about the campaign at compassionseattle.org. To join the social discussion, visit LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook.
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