Necessity of More Homeless Shelters in Lake Charles, LA

Necessity of More Homeless Shelters in Lake Charles, LA

Amiah Dugas, Writer/Reporter

  We need to provide more homeless shelters in Lake Charles, La. I want more homeless shelters in our area because it would provide a safe home and community for many that may need it. 

   There is an estimated amount of 580,466 homeless people in the United States and 3,173 homeless people in Louisiana. There are over a hundred homeless people in Lake Charles, LA. We do not have many resources to help with the problem of homelessness but a resource like Water’s Edge helps over a hundred people every week in hopes of decreasing the population of homeless people in our area. Homelessness could affect a diverse group of people including families with children, youth, people with disabilities and veterans. 

  The solution to homelessness is housing. Housing provides a foundation from which a person or family can access the services and support they need to achieve stability and continue to work towards their goals in their lives including employment, health, and recovery. 

  Homelessness is solvable, but it will take resources and political will at the local, state, and federal levels. The government cannot solve homelessness alone; part of the solution to homelessness is a partnership with the private sector.  

  There are two branches of law when it comes to homelessness in America: laws designed to help the homeless get aid, shelter, and food to improve their quality of life, and laws designed to criminalize homelessness and begging in order to force the homeless into shelter.  

   The United States Interagency Council on Homelessness is the only agency at the federal level with the sole responsibility of ending homelessness. It works across 19 federal agencies and departments, and with partners in both the public and private sectors, to improve federal spending outcomes for homelessness. 

   Homelessness is an issue because it could cause depression, poor nutrition, poor dental health, substance abuse and mental health problems. According to recent studies, homeless people also experience significantly higher rates of death, disability and chronic illness than the general population. 

   Homelessness is a very important issue that has gone on for many years. Many lives have ended early because of the cause of homelessness, the hardships, and the stress it can bring into your life. It has a ripple effect throughout the community. It impacts the availability of healthcare resources, crime and safety, the workforce, and the use of tax dollars. Further, homelessness impacts the present as well as the future. It benefits all of us to break the cycle of homelessness, one person, one family at a time.