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Showing posts from 2015

CFH Executive Director Bobby Watts Responds to Police Homeless Photos on Pix11

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Care for the Homeless Executive Director Bobby Watts was featured last night on Pix11 news to talk about an initiative by the Sergeant Benevolent Association to photograph homeless New Yorkers on the street. The officers are posting their pictures to an online Flicker photo album in an attempt to expose a supposed “decrease in quality of life in NYC” but what these pictures really highlight are the difficulties of life on the street. Whatever the politics of the initiative, we know that it’s crucial to find real fixes for the problems of people experiencing homelessness. 
“I don’t take a position on the letter or motivation. I really focus on results,” Bobby Watts, executive director of Care for the Homeless, told PIX11 News. “To the extent that more people are aware of homelessness and are determined to find solutions, that can be helpful.”
If you see someone in need of services on the street, call 3-1-1 to alert city homeless outreach teams.

Click here to watch the full story.

Start the Summer with Celebration and Health Care Success: June 22nd

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Spend the start of summer celebrating the successes of New Yorkers who have experienced homelessness at the second annual Summer Solstice Success Celebration on June 22nd! This year’s program will recognize the health care success of currently and formerly homelessness New Yorkers with presentation of awards to celebrate their achievements, live entertainment and a meal.

During the program add your own health care success story to our 'Wall of Health Care Success" art display.

The program is free and open to the public. For more information or to RSVP click the link here.

We hope to see you there!

Date: Monday, June 22nd at 4:30 p.m. Location: Red Oaks Apts., 135 W. 106th St., Manhattan (between Amsterdam & Columbus Ave.) Subway: 1, C or B to 103rd Street RSVP here (optional)

Join Us on Mon, June 22nd for 2nd Annual Summer Solstice Success Celebration!

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Join Care for the Homeless and our Client Leaders on Monday, June 22nd at 4:30 p.m. in celebrating the health care successes of homeless and formerly homeless New Yorkers. The 2nd Annual CFH Summer Solstice Success Celebration will feature live entertainment, fun and the opportunity to recognize the successes of our clients and thank the providers who delivery high quality, client centered services every day.

“So often people focus on the bad news coming out of the shelter system,” said David Broxton, a formerly homeless cancer survivor and Care for the Homeless client. “We want to put the focus on the successes of New Yorkers who have experienced homelessness - people do get back on their feet with the right services available to them.”

The event, which is free and open to the public, will be held at the dining room and gardens at Red Oak Apartments, 135 W. 106th Street in Manhattan, on Monday, June 22, at 4:30 p.m. In addition to celebrating health care stories of success, the group…

Care for the Homeless Joins 30,000 Walkers at AIDS Walk NYC

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Over 30,000 walkers participated in this past Sunday’s AIDS Walk NYC, including 11 Care for the Homeless staff and client leaders. The 30th anniversary of the event honored Governor Cuomo for his ‘Bend the Curve’ Plan, the governor’s plan to end the AIDS epidemic in New York in by reducing new cases to 750 by 2020. The governor’s three point plan includes identifying people with HIV who remain undiagnosed and linking them to care, retaining people living with HIV with health care services and anti-HIV therapy and providing access to PrEP (Pre-Exposure Prophylaxis) to high-risk individuals to help them remain HIV negative.
The annual walk raised record funds for the Gay Men’s Health Crisis as well as over 40 other AIDS services organization in the tri-state area whose services are key to helping bend the curve of new HIV cases in New York. 

Care for the Homeless has been on the frontline of the crisis for many years, providing critically needed HIV/AIDS services such as diagnosis and tre…

Care for the Homeless takes to the Hill at NHCHC Conference in D.C.

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During last week’s National Health Care for the Homeless Conference in Washington D.C. Care for the Homeless’ clients and staff took to the Hill to advocate for the programs and policies that we know can help end homelessness. Throughout the three day conference a Care for the Homeless team made up of Client Leaders David Broxton and Gayle Dorsky and staff members Kim Dalve and Dominiq Williams visited with congressional representatives from all over New York State.

“Even small cuts to SNAP (Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program) are really hurting people who rely on them.” Gayle told NY representatives. “Like many New Yorkers, I’ve had to go to food pantries more, but I have friends who don’t have the time to go to food pantries or get turned away from pantries that have limited resources.” In addition to advocating for programs like SNAP, the CFH group spoke about the importance of reinstating the National Housing Trust Fund’s pre-recession commitment to use a small per…

Care for the Homeless Graduates Second Class of “Certified Advocates”

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Last night Care for the Homeless celebrated the graduation of its second class of “CFH Certified Advocates”, adding new members to the Care for the Homeless Speakers’ Bureau. The program is open to volunteer client leaders who have been or are homeless and are consumers of Care for the Homeless health care or other services.
Those recognized as graduating included Patricia Gale, George Phipps, Monica Sayers, Brenda Turner and Raymond West. Previous graduates who introduced the new graduates or spoke at the graduation included Calvin Alston, David Broxton, Ava Conner, Gayle Dorsky, Garrett McMahan and Anthony Williams.
In order to graduate participants must completed 12 hours of training, half in homeless policy issue training and half in public speaking training. At the graduation each new Certified Advocate told their personal story, hooked that story to a public policy issue and advocated for better public policy on that issue.
Certified Advocates become members of the Care for the Hom…

NYC Considering Better Homeless Policy and Programs

by Jeff Foreman, Director of Policy The New York City budget process moves along with continuing signs of improving homeless policy in the Big Apple. Since the De Blasio administration and Homeless Services Commissioner Gilbert Taylor came to office 15 ½ months ago New York City has gone from no real tools to important programs designed to fight and prevent homelessness in the city. For example there was absolutely no subsidy or direct housing program to transition people from shelter to permanent housing in December, 2013. Today, with support of both the city administration and the City Council, there are 6 LINC (living in the Community) subsidy programs designed to subsidize that transition for over 5,000 households annually, and a targeted priority to move 750 families (the city actually exceeded that goal this fiscal year) into NYCHA public housing units that become available each year.
Now the City Council has released its response to the Mayor’s preliminary budget submission wi…

Care for The Homeless Sponsors NYC Homeless Policy Forum 2015 Tomorrow

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Tomorrow, Wednesday, April 8th, Care for the Homeless and Baruch College is sponsoring “New York Homeless Policy Forum 2015”, a  major policy symposium and public education event aimed at bringing people interested in homeless policy together to focus on how to produce better outcomes in New York’s homeless policy operation, do so more efficiently and move the city toward ending homelessness as we know it. The program, which runs from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., features top policy makers including New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, City Homeless Services Commissioner Gilbert Taylor, Public Advocate Letitia James and City Councilman Corey Johnson. All the schedule details are listed below.
Follow live tweeting from the Forum at #homelesspolicyNYC  

Jointly Sponsored by Baruch College’s Narendra Paul Loomba  School of Management and Care for the Homeless
Wednesday, April 8, at Baruch College, Newman Library,  Room 750, 151 East 25th Street (bet. Lexington and 3rd Ave.)
9-9:25 a.m.…

Schedule Announced for New York Homeless Policy Forum 2015

New York Homeless Policy Forum 2015 Jointly Sponsored by Baruch College’s Narendra Paul Loomba School of Management and Care for the Homeless, Wednesday, April 8, at Baruch College, Newman Library, Room 750, 151 East 25th Street (bet. Lexington and 3rd Ave.)
9-9:25 a.m.- Registration, Coffee and Networking
9:25-9:30  a.m.-Welcome-Introductions
9:30-9:40 a.m.-Presentation: Homeless Issues in New York City, Where Do We Stand?
9:40-10:40 a.m.- Scope, Scale and Overview of Homeless Issues in NYC This plenary panel will serve as both an introduction to homeless policy issues in NYC, and explore the challenges. Presentation will include analysis of how many people are homeless or at risk in New York City, the context of the current crisis, NYC’s “right to shelter” and unique issues of homeless in NYC and discussion of what we’re doing right and wrong.
10:50-11:50 a.m.- Panel:Stigmatization, Criminalization and Attacks On Homeless People Panel will explore how and why we stigmatize homeless people…

Panels Announced for New York Homeless Policy Forum 2015, Register Today!

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The New York Homeless Policy Forum 2015, cosponsored by Care for the Homeless and Baruch College, will feature NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and City Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Gilbert Taylor, as well as leading advocates, policy-makers and clients. We are pleased to announce the following program of panels. Register today!

Scope, Scale and Overview of Homelessness in New York City Serving as an introduction to homelessness in NYC, this presentation will include analysis of how many people are homeless or at risk in New York City, the context of the current crisis, NYC’s “right to shelter” and unique issues of homelessness in NYC.
Stigmatization, Criminalization and Attacks On Homeless People This panel will explore how and why we stigmatize homeless people and how the everyday activities of low-income and people experiencing homelessness are effected by stigmatization. Delving into societal attitudes towards poor and marginalized peoples, panelists will d…

Join Care for the Homeless and Baruch College for the 2015 Homeless Policy Forum!

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Join Care for the Homeless and Baruch College for the 2015 New York Homeless Policy Forum, a day of panels addressing issues in homeless and housing policy in New York City. Leading advocates, policy-makers, service providers and clients of the shelter system will discuss topics such as issues facing children in the shelter system, experiences of living in the shelter system and the low-income affordable housing market.

Featuring special guest City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and Department of Homeless Services Commissioner Gilbert Taylor. Have questions? Please email policy@cfhnyc.org
Register here. When? Wednesday, April 8th from 9:00 a.m. - 3:30 p.m.
Where? Newman Library, Baruch College Room 750, 151 East 25th Street (bwtn 3rd Ave and Lexington Avenue) SUBWAY: N, Q, R (23rd Street) or 6 (23rd Street) Please register to attend.  Light refreshments and lunch will be served.

Care for the Homeless a leader in the Fight

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To Save Human Service Programs for Homeless and Poor People
Last week Care for the Homeless, and 2.100 other advocacy and provider organizations across the U.S., launched a campaign to fight “sequestration”, the automatic federal funding cuts threatening most human service programs in the coming federal budget. These cuts, set at 8.2% for most domestic discretionary spending, include cuts to health programs, housing assistance, child welfare programs, job training and on and on.
Operating as NDD United (NDD stands for nondefense discretionary) this national effort contacted every U.S. Senator and House of Representatives member emphasizing the critical importance of these human service programs that serve our neediest neighbors, the harmful effects of budget cuts and the need for a strong domestic program as well as defense spending.
The cuts an 8.2% reduction requires would be draconian. It would mean fewer people getting adequate medical care, less mental health care and addiction s…

NYC’s Infant Mortality Rate Hits All Time Low “For Most People”

By Jeff Foreman, Director of Policy
At Care for the Homeless, New York City’s largest provider of healthcare exclusively to homeless people of all ages, we’re always watching public health statistics and city health policy. So we were pleased to see the city report a new record low infant mortality rate of 4.6 deaths per 1,000 live births (for calendar year 2013) – which the city reports is down 24.6% since 2004.New York City’s improved infant mortality rate is well better than the national average, as is New York City’s age average life expectancy both for men and women. Which is great.
But the figures also show a great disparity by race. The mortality rate for black infants is 8.3 deaths per 1,000 live births, more than two-and-a-half times the rate for white infants. The same kin d of disparities exist by neighborhood with the city’s poorest areas (like East New York at 8.4) having far more troubling infant mortality rates than more affluent areas (like Park Slope at 1.9).
Every y…

HOPE Street Homeless Count Postponed – But Homelessness Never Is

In the midst of New York City’s blizzard emergency, of course the city’s Homeless Outreach Population Estimate (HOPE) Count, scheduled for from about midnight until 4 a.m. on Tuesday, January 27, is postponed. Care for the Homeless and our dozen volunteer staff and client leaders signed up to participate will plan to take part in the reschedule HOPE Count when that takes place.
The HOPE count is part of the national HUD point-in-time count of homelessness in the U.S. In fact, the point in time count originated in New York City in the 1990s and has taken place citywide on one night in January continuously since 1995.  It’s an important research and policy tool that Care for the Homeless supports and takes part in.
In the meantime, the severe weather that challenges us all is another stark reminder of the need to prevent, ameliorate and work to end homelessness. Last year’s HOPE count indicated at least 3,357 homeless people were living unsheltered on the streets or in public places in…

Care for the Homeless Holds Second Speakers’ Bureau Class Where Clients Learn to “Advocate for Themselves”

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Care for the Homeless began the Speakers’ Bureau in September 2013 as a program to help homeless and formerly homeless New Yorkers tell their stories and advocate for changes in homeless policy in New York City.  From presentations at universities such as Pratt, John Jay and Mt. Saint Vincent in the Bronx, to elementary school classrooms, to advocacy events and city council hearings, our first class of ‘Certified Advocates’ have told their stories to a wide-variety of New Yorkers, sharing the message that we can end homelessness as we know it.

This past weekend January 17th and 18th saw the second course of Speakers’ Bureau applicants, each a CFH client who has experienced homelessness in New York City,  improve their public speaking and learn about housing policies and advocacy techniques. The program is full of dedicated New Yorkers who want to take a part in calling community leaders to greater action in solving the homeless crisis.

The class was taught by Jeff Foreman, CFH Policy …

61st Anniversary – FDR’s Second Bill of Rights

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“the right of every family to a decent home” by Jeff Foreman, Policy Director at Care for the Homeless
Sunday, January 11, marked the 61st anniversary of President Franklin Roosevelt’s renowned “Second Bill of Rights” Speech, still remembered and celebrated by social justice advocates and those who work for better policies to fight poverty and homelessness.
It’s interesting to recognize that FDR made his famous rights commitment not during the Depression, but at the height of the Second World War. In his State of the Union address that year the President argued it was time to commit to a new set of standards, a “second bill of rights,” that he referred to as an eight point “economic bill of rights”.
Roosevelt included in his plan to assure equality in the pursuit of happiness an enumerated “right of every family to a decent home.” He also included “the right to adequate medical care and the opportunity to achieve and enjoy good health” as well as rights like adequate food and clothing,…

Did you know...

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On Monday, January 5th, Care for the Homeless got together to discuss Mayor de Blasio’s first year in housing policy. The lively conversation covered the Mayor’s housing plan and recently begun LINC programs that issue rental subsidies to help people move from shelter into housing. Get up to speed on NYC housing policy and join the discussion during Care for the Homeless 1st Monday Policy Briefings! Next discussion will be held Mon., February 2nd, 2015 at 5 pm. Want to attend? Send us an email at policy@cfhnyc.org

RIP, Mario Cuomo

Jeff Foreman, Director of Policy

For New Yorkers who lived through the ’80s and cared about helping people in need, the passing of former Governor Mario Cuomo, while not entirely unexpected, was personal.  One of only 5 Empire State Governors who served more than 2 terms in the last 175 years, among them giants of history like Al Smith, Tom Dewey and Nelson Rockefeller, Cuomo loomed large for a generation in the U.S.
The first Governor Cuomo reveled in ideas, words and perhaps ironies. He was a near baseball star who would have traded his political celebrity for baseball stardom. He was thought of as the next-Presidential-hopeful, but couldn't quite convince himself to run. He was famous for a 1984 political convention keynote address he never considered a good speech, that inspires those who hear it today. He died on the day his son, our current governor, was sworn into his second term.
Cuomo’s 1984 speech came at a critical time. It was the Reagan era, well into the process of t…