On December 9th, the Network, Coalition for the Homeless and Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH) hosted a Campaign 4 NY/NY Housing press conference to announce that, for the first time ever, the number of single adults in the DHS shelter system had surpassed 20,000.
Network Executive Director Laura Mascuch emphasized that this record breaking number underscores the need for more supportive housing, especially in light of the COVID-19 pandemic. “New York has been facing a homelessness crisis for years, but the pandemic has accelerated it to unprecedented heights. To meet the scale of this challenge, we need Governor Cuomo to make good on his historic pledge to create 20,000 supportive apartments by committing to fund the remaining 14,000 homes in this year’s budget.”
She also pointed out additional benefits to the Governor’s continuation of the 20,000 unit commitment: “[Creating more supportive housing] would help end chronic homelessness and create affordable housing – all while putting New York on the path to recovery by saving money otherwise spent on crisis interventions, creating much-needed jobs, leveraging private capital, and spurring investment in our communities.”
Geraldine Sawyer, resident of Concern for Independent Living’s Surf Vets Place and an army veteran, also stressed the need for more supportive housing, “If we had more housing like Surf Vets [supportive housing residence], it would save a lot of lives. We need more places like this. It has changed my life.”
Kristin Miller, Director at CSH and Giselle Routheir, Policy Director at Coalition for the Homeless also spoke. See the full press release here.
The press conference was covered by a number of news outlets. Please find a list of articles covering the event below.