Economics/Class Relations

Utah Is on Track to End Homelessness by 2015 With This One Simple Idea


Give them an apartment first, ask questions later.

Utah has reduced its rate of chronic homelessness by 78 percent over the past eight years, moving 2000 people off the street and putting the state on track to eradicate homelessness altogether by 2015. How’d they do it? The state is giving away apartments, no strings attached. In 2005, Utah calculated the annual cost of E.R. visits and jail stays for an average homeless person was $16,670, while the cost of providing an apartment and social worker would be $11,000. Each participant works with a caseworker to become self-sufficient, but if they fail, they still get to keep their apartment.

MORE: San Francisco’s homeless take free showers on a bus retrofitted with bathrooms

Other states are eager to emulate Utah’s results. Wyoming has seen its homeless population more than double in the past three years, and it only provides shelter for 26 percent of them, the lowest rate in the country. City officials in Casper, Wyoming, now plan to launch a pilot program using the methods of Utah’s Housing First program. There’s no telling how far the idea might go.

AND: One organization’s goal to improve the health of African-American women


1 reply »

  1. If you go to Youtube you can watch my full length movie residentially impaired in america, where I suggested they do just that… Give these people house and you will actually save money and see a decrease in crime. It is highly in effective and non-practical to out law homelessness. Paper doesn’t solve human need but action does.

Leave a Reply