Mayor Bill de Blasio was elected on a “Tale of Two Cities”
– one incredibly rich and privileged and one poor or struggling and losing
ground. Care for the Homeless works every day to deliver life changing services
to the most vulnerable families and individuals struggling daily in New York
City. As part of our advocacy for our clients we’re participating in a national
conversation about economic inequality in America and what can be done about
Join us for a special screening of the film Inequality for All
This week, on Thursday, February 27th, Care for the Homeless and
our client leaders are sponsoring a showing of the movie “Inequality for All”
and an open discussion following the screening. The program begins at 5 p.m. in
the CFH conference room on the 5th floor of 30 E. 33rd
The award-winning movie Inequality for All is based on a course Dr. Robert Reich, former U.S. Secretary of Labor, teaches at the
University of California. The open conversation that follows will include film
reactions and focus on what could be done to ease economic inequality in New
The movie isn’t specific to New York City, but Mayor de
Blasio is right in portraying us as two worlds. New York boasts more
billionaires than any other city in the world (80 at last count) and more
millionaires than anyplace in America. But among our beautiful structures and
incredible culture is another story.
When the Census Bureau released its annual report last
September the “official” poverty rate in NYC was 21.2%, up from 20.9% in 2012
and 20.1% in 2010. That’s high, heading in the wrong direction and represents
1.7+ million people below the poverty threshold. For children in the Big Apple
the rate is 31%.
Worse, this actually understates the problem, because the
poverty rate doesn’t adjust for regional cost-of-living differences. In other
words, the 21.2% poverty rate is based on measure that calculates the cost of
living as the same in expensive Manhattan, New York as precisely the same as in
Our conversation will be lively. We’ll include differing
points of view and welcome your participation. Please rsvp today.
Over 170 homeless women participated in last month's Pocketbooks for Paps campaign.
This campaign was born a
few years ago when a very generous donor gifted us with a large
container of handbags. Our Health Education Team devised a creative way
to distribute the donation by creating a health awareness
campaign. During Cervical Cancer Awareness Month in January, the team
provided educational workshops to over 170 women, with 22% receiving
their exam that same day. All participants "shopped" at the end of the
workshop for a new pocketbook or handbag.
"There are so many
misconceptions associated with detection, prevention and treatment,"
says Gillian Saunders, CFH Senior Health Educator. "I met a young woman
in her early 20s who was hesitant and scared at
the prospect of receiving her first pelvic exam. Donations like the
pocketbooks really help us break down barriers to care."
Do you have a new or gently used pocketbook or handbag you can donate to our next campaign? Help us use fashion to prevent cervical cancer and change lives. Please
email us or call Rosanna Montilla in the Development Office at (212) 366-4459 ext. 202 to learn more.
For the past year, Care for the Homeless client leaders and
our certified client advocates have fought for extending a “30% rent cap” to
all people living with HIV/AIDS in city subsidized HASA (HIV/AIDS Services
Administration) housing programs. So it was with extreme pleasure that we got
the word last week that the Mayor and Governor have jointly taken action to
guarantee the 30% rent cap to more than 10,000 New Yorkers in HASA housing.
Mayor de Blasio hailed the city-state effort, and so do we!
Unlike most extremely low income housing and subsidized
housing for poor households with disabilities, HASA housing never guaranteed a
30% rent cap. It always should have. Governor Cuomo said, “By implementing a
30% income cap for low-income renters with HIV/AIDS, we are protecting New
need and making our communities stronger, healthier, and more
compassionate for all.”
Our client advocates spoke out for this most recently
Wednesday morning at a Care for the Homeless policy breakfast and have visited with policy makers
and elected officials urging the change. On Wednesday client leaders advocating
for the 30% cap included Garrett McMahan, Gayle Dorsky, Philip Malebranche,
Bill Bryant and Anthony Williams.
We salute our client leaders for their successful advocacy,
along with our advocacy partners including VOCAL, GMHC, the Supportive Housing
Network of New York, United to End Homelessness and so many more.
Study after study documents homelessness is a public health hazard,
especially increasing risks for people living with HIV/AIDS. The 30% rent cap
is a federally adopted HUD guideline for affordable housing. No low income
household should pay more than 30% of gross household income for housing.
While we celebrate this victory, which we hope will very
quickly be instituted, we recognize the need to make 30% capped housing
available to every homeless household, and how very far we remain from that
goal that promises better outcomes for people experiencing homelessness, for
our communities and not insignificantly substantial savings in tax dollars,
Please join us. Sign up for our Policy Matters newsletter here.
Become a Care for the Homeless Advocate to End Homelessness.
“57,000 is 57,000 too many.”
That’s what the sign said that a Care for the Homeless client leader held uplast year at a rally (featuredhere) on the steps of New York’s City Hall, after the media
brought us the bad news that we’d set yet another record for the number of
people experiencing homelessness in New York City shelters.
Last year over 111,000 people spent time in our city’s homeless shelters. More
than 40,000 of them were children. Those figures, too, represent new high
census figures for shelter populations.
Another way to think about it is that in HUD’s recently released Point-in-Time
survey for a given day in January of 2013, there were 64,060 people in New York
City’s homeless shelters or living on the streets. That’s a 13% increase in
City homelessness, year-over-year, at the same time the country as a whole
decreased homelessness by 4%.That study found about 1-in-10 homeless people
in America was in New York City!
We do know the City’s Department of Homeless Services census doesn't include
all people experiencing homelessness. It doesn't account for
families in short-term emergency domestic violence shelters, or sleeping
in runaway/homeless youth centers, or emergency HASA (HIV-AIDS Services
Administration) shelters, or sleeping in faith based nonpublic shelters or some
veteran emergency beds.
York City shelters.
In one recent Care for the Homeless speakers' bureau presentation, one client began with the photos of her colleague with the sign: "57,000 is 57,000 too many." She said, "When I was cold and hungry on the street, I used to say that even one is too many if they want a home like I did."
We can end modern day homelessness in New York City. And
here’s the interesting thing, we know how to do it, doing it promises better
outcomes and a second chance for the 55-64,000 people who will sleep in city
homeless shelters or on the New York City streets tonight and the cost of doing
it isn’t higher than what we’re doing right now.
What’s more, with a very supportive city administration and
City Council, the timing is right to do it!
Most advocates and the de Blasio administration agree New
York City needs to reinstate two vitally needed programs that city government
ended while they were working! First is the use of a small portion of our
city’s federal housing resources – NYCHA public housing apartments and Section
8 housing rent vouchers – to help fight homelessness. Second is a housing
subsidy targeted to move people experiencing homelessness from shelters to
Care for the Homeless also believes more affordable housing for very-low
income New Yorkers, supportive housing for those who need it and a housing
first strategy has to be part of the solution. We also advocate for adequate
and appropriate medical care, mental health and human services and other needed
programs for homeless people as vital to fighting, preventing and ending
Want to hear more about it? On Wednesday, February 12,
several Care for the Homeless Certified
Advocate client leaders will be talking
to the Care for the Homeless Policy Committee about their stories and these critical policies. If
you want to hear the presentation, and join our effort, let us know – and we’ll
make a reservation for you.
Reserve your space and join us on Wednesday, February 12 by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.