Deal with causes of homelessness

Published: 6/24/2021 3:59:58 PM A recent letter published here asked whether the city of Northampton could “let the street people k...



Published: 6/24/2021 3:59:58 PM

A recent letter published here asked whether the city of Northampton could “let the street people know that there are other, more productive alternatives to panhandling.” Like what, exactly?

There is nothing “more productive” a person who is panhandling can do in most cases. Practically no one knowingly hires homeless people. Most homeless people wouldn’t be homeless if there was a single strand of a safety net left for them to hang onto. The reality is, the country and state we live in are content to let you lose everything you have if you are deemed insufficiently productive.

Many people lose their homes because of mental and physical health conditions that a truly “developed” nation would work to prevent and treat in its citizens. Good thing none of us are aging, and that we will all stay healthy and secure in our incomes forever!

The people who have been writing into this paper lately seem to be more offended by the visible consequences of this culture of callous indifference than by its causes. This line of thinking only enables misguided “tough but fair” policy decisions, in the hopes that an invisible problem is a managed problem.

If the city takes steps to address homelessness without working to address the structural problems that force people out of their homes, then when it comes to making Northampton a better place to live and visit, these actions will be similarly unproductive.

Greg Larsen

Hadley



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Newsrust - US Top News: Deal with causes of homelessness
Deal with causes of homelessness
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