The number of homeless New Yorkers has exploded in the past seven years.
Homeless advocates hold fast to the belief that government fails because it doesn’t listen enough to what the homeless themselves say they need. Yet a new report by the Coalition for the Homeless shows why that makes no sense. Even if officials in the Big Apple commit to doing whatever the homeless ask, they couldn’t fulfill the vow, because the demands often press in opposite directions.
Coalition researchers surveyed more than 200 street homeless New Yorkers — and found that the main reason “rough sleepers” don’t enter shelters is concern over safety. At the same time, the homeless often say they don’t care for the police. Coalition researchers amplify these anti-police sentiments and argue that more criminal-justice “reform” would help reduce homelessness in Gotham.
Stephen Eide is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute and contributing editor of City Journal.
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