Everett To Accelerate Housing First Plans

November 16, 2015

Everett, Everett Government


Lloyd Pendleton speaks to a packed house at the Historic Everett Theatre Monday evening.

In September, the City of Everett announced plans to have 20 units of low-barrier housing for those experiencing chronic homelessness ready to use over the next two years.

Tonight, after hearing Lloyd Pendleton speak on how Utah addressed its efforts to battle chronic homelessness, Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson pledged to have those 20 units up and running within a year and the first of the units occupied by mid 2016.

Pendleton was the keynote speaker of Everett’s Housing First forum and is the person who took the lead in writing and implementing Utah’s Ten-Year-Plan to end chronic homelessness.

“You will never end all homelessness,” said Pendleton. “Start small, but fast.”

Pendleton shared the Vision Statement for the State of Utah – “Everyone has access to safe, decent, affordable housing with the needed resources and supports for self-sufficiency and well being.”

“You need three things…Champions for homeless citizens, Collaboration between agencies, funders, social services, government and faith communities and Compassion for those experiencing homeless,” Pendleton said.

Pendleton explained it has to be about outcome and not process. That out of about 400 plans to end homelessness written by various cities across the country in recent years, only a couple have actually been implemented.

Among the quotes he offered…“The problem with communication is the illusion that it has occurred.”

While it can cost around $12,000.00 per year per person to provide low-barrier housing to those who are chronically homeless, that same person costs taxpayers more than $20,000.00 in emergency medical care, jail and public safety services.

“The cost is already being incurred,” said Pendleton. “Get past the idea that if you build it, people will flock here…they’re already here.”

He also addressed the idea that housing first is some kind of reward for being homeless. “You don’t just put people in housing and ignore them, case managers must see them and there must be accountability,” Pendleton added.

The City of Everett taped the entire presentation and is should be ready to view on Everett TV Channel by the end of the week. You can also learn more about the city’s plans online here.

There will be a second Housing First Community Forum on Monday February 1st, 2016.

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My Everett News is a hyperlocal news website featuring breaking news and events in Everett, WA. We also cover City of Everett information and items of interest to those who live and work in Everett. It's written by Leland Dart a former Snohomish County based radio reporter born and raised in Everett.

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9 Responses to “Everett To Accelerate Housing First Plans”

  1. Obviously Says:

    So we have to foot the bill because these bums drank too much and lost their jobs or decided one day to try heroin? Definitely time to provide them with free crack dens at the taxpayers expense where they are not “required” to get treatment. I’ve never done drugs and therefore actually have to work for a living, pay a mortgage, and pay out of my ass in taxes so that these trolls can have more free stuff and a house to practice their “problem”. What happened to throwing people caught with heroin into jail? A few days in a cave will sober them up just fine.

    I mean, housing projects (which is basically all this is) have always worked so well in the past, right? Anyone been to Mariner in a while?

    You people who support this crap are completely backwards. You think you’re being “considerate” or “loving” when all you’re doing is exacerbating the problem and making more crime and expense for everyone. Oh no! Someone might see you as intolerant to people who shoot up heroin! The horror! Look, I’m sorry you decided to drink excessively or do drugs. Not societies f*cking problem.

    • Mark Warren Says:

      do you know how many people have died in Everett jail this past year?

      I understand that you think the death penalty is appropriate for drug use. I guess I can only hope that you never lose everything due to a downturn in the economy. I hope you and your family never have to sleep on the street. I hope you never KNOW what its like to be homeless. Because even as much as you hate, we wont hate you..

      In 2004 I was injured on the job and permanatly disabled. In waiting for SSI to start, I LOST EVERYTHING… It was NOT my fault.
      But Obviously…. thinks people like me deserve the street. Ill bet you are a christian also.

  2. Allie Says:

    We all want to “go home.” Home has an emotional and spiritual component. People without houses, physical shelter, lack the emotional, cognitive, and spiritual components of the fortunate people who have housing. Even with shelter, they will have to find home.

    As you sit with your jobs and housing, you take your own inner resources for granted. Those resources give you the stamina to find shelter and maintain a job. Maybe you even feel at home. I am happy for you. I am grateful for my house and employment every day.

    Being on the streets does not allow time or resources for people to develop inner resources. I believe in “housing first.”

  3. Eleanore Says:

    Free housing, just where is this going to be located? I have to work to maintian my apt it must be nice to get things for free

  4. Robert Says:

    Or they can get off the drugs and get jobs. What a novel idea. But hey… what incentive do you have to do that when you know you can live off of the hard work of others.

    • Zach Says:

      I think you’re grossly underestimating the shackles of drug addiction and the difficulty in finding a job when you have no mailing address, phone number, clean clothes, transportation, and years absent on a resume. Not to mention the total lack of self-confidence and communication skills (things important to all potential employers) some people have after spending time on the street.

      Even looking past your void of compassion for fellow human beings that have nothing, the Housing First approach is more cost-effective. The dollars spent on law enforcement, public sanitation, emergency medical, charity and community outreach, and our loss in property values being lower than they could otherwise is far higher than what the city will pay to put a stable roof over their heads.

      So even if you don’t support it for humane reasons, support it for financial reasons.

  5. Ray Says:

    The military offers free room and board FYI.

  6. Zach Says:

    I’m glad to see Utah’s solution is catching on. We’re too rich a nation to not provide shelter to the destitute, and its a nice added benefit knowing it’s more cost-effective than leaving them on the street. I hope this program works out, because we all benefit from a lower homeless population.