Mayor Harrell continues to throw money at Seattle’s homelessness problem
UPDATED: APRIL 4, 2023 AT 1:20 PM
BY MAX GROSS
Producer, Jason Rantz Show, 3-7pm on KTTH
The city of Seattle continues to throw money at housing projects while people are dying on the streets. Complaints about campsites and the inevitable sweeps have been all too common.
The issue of homelessness has grown into a disturbing new trend: bodies are being discovered in public places. One was found last week near Lake City Way and State Route 522. Another was discovered in a tent near T-Mobile Park. The system failed these people as their bodies are being exposed in the most brutal way imaginable.
It is extremely sad. You have to wonder how a system could be so broken that it could fail these people so badly.
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“These overdose deaths inside tiny house villages, inside hotels … you have to dig and scrape for those items there,” said We Heart Seattle founder Andrea Suarez.
City officials and the local news media just want to gloss over these terrible tragedies. The local government seems dead set on the narrative that this is nothing more than a housing crisis.
This has never been more evident than with Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell’s $970 million housing tax announcement.
“This plan invests to meet the scale of the housing crisis, doing more than ever to prevent homelessness,” Harrell said.
The mayor referred to the fee as a “proven solution” during his announcement at the 35th Annual Housing Development Consortium Celebration at the Seattle Convention Center.
This will raise taxes on Seattle homeowners, which is a pretty curious way to make housing more affordable. Also, this ignores the significant problems that persist in the homeless community, those with a chemical addiction will not miraculously get clean just by going inside.
Harrell plans to bring 3,000 new homes (either for rent or for sale) to low-income residents or people recovering from homelessness.
Getting people off the streets is one of many necessary steps. Connecting those struggling with addiction to resources is vital.
“I have somebody who works with one of the transitional housing projects, and they had 12 overdoses last year, and the year before that there were two,” Suarez told the Jason Rantz Show on AM 770 KTTH. “So overdoses are increasing. If shelter and harm reduction were working policies to begin with, we wouldn’t have these numbers making headlines today, the problem is getting worse.”
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These figures show an increase in the homeless population. The King County Regional Homeless Authority’s 2022 census listed 13,368 people living on the streets. The data shows that 37% of those people self-reported having a substance use disorder.
This is a multifaceted problem that is not easily solved. Still, Harrell and the City of Seattle will keep throwing money at him until he’s gone — no matter how much he raises taxes.
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