Also serving the communities of De Luz, Rainbow, Camp Pendleton, Pala and Pauma

Time to enforce common sense solutions for homelessness

Last week's Supreme Court decision affirming cities' authority to ban camping on public sidewalks marks a significant victory for common sense. This ruling is paramount for the safety and well-being of our community and for restoring the lives of those suffering. It's time for the city and county to restrict all sleeping on sidewalks.

Enabling addicts to continue using is not compassionate. We wouldn't allow our friends or family members to spiral into addiction without intervening, so why should we allow members of our community to do so? We must provide effective and humane solutions that address the root causes of homelessness and addiction rather than perpetuating the cycle of dependency and despair.

This ruling empowers cities to enforce policies that maintain the cleanliness, safety, and accessibility of our public spaces. This is progress. Next, the government needs to change its approach to housing without rules.

Housing First failure

The issue remains dire despite the State of California already squandering over $10 billion on "homeless solutions" in just the past three years. Housing First is a failed formula, burdening our communities with disastrous results.

Between 2005 and 2016, chronic homelessness in California decreased by 51%. However, this positive trend took a sharp reversal after the implementation of Housing First in 2016. Between 2016 and 2022, chronic homelessness increased by a staggering 93%, reaching levels not seen since 2005.

Today, nearly one in three homeless individuals in the country resides in California. In contrast, the rest of the nation has seen a decrease in homelessness, with the homeless count dropping from 622,000 in 2012 to 582,000 in 2022.

This data underscores the urgent need to rethink our strategies. Instead of merely providing housing without addressing the underlying issues of addiction and mental health, we need comprehensive solutions that offer support and rehabilitation. This approach benefits those living on the streets and enhances the entire community's quality of life.

We can and must do better. By enforcing sensible policies and focusing on practical, compassionate solutions, we can make a real difference. The Supreme Court's decision is a step in the right direction. Now, it's up to us to follow through and ensure our policies truly serve everyone's best interests.

 

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