Homeless strategy officer talks HEAL Initiative in Austin

 strategy officer talks HEAL Initiative in Austin

AUSTIN, TEXAS: Dianna Grey says there is a great urgency regarding the homelessness issue.

“There are many strategies for ending homelessness and hotel conversion is just one of them,” she said. “We have largely shared values about how we want to help our neighbors who are experiencing homelessness,” she said. Grey has been living in Austin for 30 years.

“In those settings, we have robust on-site services. So, there are case managers in contact with tenants, making themselves available every day,” said Grey. “Of course there is signage, but one of the things we have found in our own experience and in other cities is that that continued outreach and engagement by service providers around that site can be really effective,” Grey added.

Dr. Michelle Edwards who is a professor also agrees the homeless need be housed. “How do they plan on closing those areas? How do they plan on making it impossible for people to be there any longer? If you look at the history of how this has been done in the city it’s typically been done through policing, through sweeps, through giving citations,” said Edwards.

Written by Bryan Barnes

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