Star Advertiser reporter explores other cities for homeless solu - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Star Advertiser reporter explores other cities for homeless solutions

In a series of stories, Star Advertiser reporter Dan Nakaso explores 3 other cities to see what homeless programs we could incorporate in Honolulu. He was on the road for 2 weeks. He picked Seattle and San Francisco because of their high real estate prices, crowded urban cores and large tourism industries.

In Seattle, the city has been using the "housing first" initiative. This program prioritizes getting the homeless off the streets and then finding them help with drug addiction, alcohol abuse or mental illness. Officials there have found that they can save tens of thousands of dollars per person by getting them under a roof. They saved money because the homeless stopped using emergency rooms and ambulances as often as they did before.

In San Francisco, Nakaso looked at 2 successful programs which provided sanitary services for the homeless. The city provides a mobile bus that has been converted into a bathroom and shower that the homeless can use. Also, the city is now providing public restrooms in some of the neighborhoods most affected by the homeless. They place an attendant outside to make sure that they are kept clean and they're not used for drug deals  It's called the Pit Stop. Both programs are credited with keeping the city streets much cleaner. San Francisco has saved thousands of dollars in cleaning fees because of them.

This Sunday, October 4th, the Star Advertiser will print Nakaso's third article in this homeless series. This time, he explores Salt Lake City for solutions and said that this city had the most compelling programs that he has seen so far.

To read Dan's stories, go to staradvertiser.com.

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