Opinion: Tent City Isn’t New, It’s Newly Visible
Renovating old motel buildings is an approach adopted by other regions, but Charlotte could make a different choice. We could lead the nation in innovative disruption. How many non-traditional housing solutions or rent subsidies could we have funded with that $18 million? Our city is full of creative, community-focused solution cultivators who are ready to lead new initiatives. Instead of always listening to the same leaders who got us where we are, why don’t we allow others — maybe even our homeless neighbors — to create new solutions?
Leveraging the local talent we already have, we can more efficiently allocate these funds to create long-term affordable housing opportunities with appropriate programming that help more people get back on their feet and change the narrative for how we help people experiencing homelessness on a local and national scale.
This work by Queen City Nerve is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Well then what’s your solution? I don’t see one. Look, I feel you whole-heartedly (that’s a word right?), it sucks and folks deserve better… But so does my neighborhood! I’m not just talking aesthetics, yes it’s certainly an image problem for Charlotte, but those camps are impacting safety on many different levels, they’re impacting economic development, they are impacting surrounding families that chose nearby neighborhoods to raise their children in. It should never have been allowed to expand as much as it did. I, like many others who like to consider themselves a compassionate person, looked past it during the pandemic (still going), and said “well they shouldn’t be crammed inside a shelter – that’s not safe – and if they want to be outside that’s their prerogative as a human. – I’m fine with this, hopefully it doesn’t get worse.” Well over the past year it did get a lot worse and the expansion of the “tent city” is crazy exponential. It has to be curtailed and it’s to the point where some sort of loitering law or something needs to be enforced so the tents are removed. Not the ideal solution, or at least not a resolution to the real problem, but perhaps it’s a reset so we can start with more control over the situation and focus on the people rather than the tents. I can dream about a society where we can employ the homeless to build their own homes, and that local government could provide programs to help facilitate this, and partner with local investors to fund it etc, but unfortunately, a councilman’s call for action to remove the tents is the best we’re gonna get, period. Enforcing a law is the only solution for this current situation. I genuinely, sincerely, hope and to some extent believe it is possible to achieve a better multi-faceted solution to the growing homeless population. However I’m not naive enough to think it’s going to happen soon. It takes time for more people like you and I, and society in general to be the majority ruling age of government. Give it another 20 years. Thank you for voicing your opinion, it encourage compassion – a cornerstone value that our community needs. Disclaimer – please don’t make this political or about law enforcement, you’re barking up the wrong tree.
Thank you for this information. It’s shocking to see the $18 million going to help 88 people. Breaking that down, that’s almost $205,000 per person. Good lord, are you saying we can buy them a house for $150k and provide training for a job in order to keep the house? Then let’s do it. Could it really be that easy? I don’t know what the answer is, but putting it in black and white print: $18 million to help 88 people should be a huge wake up call. And it’s absolutely unacceptable that the woman in your article is WORKING but doesn’t qualify for a place to live. Ridiculous. If you or I can see the disparity, why can’t those in charge? I was shocked and saddened when a few months ago I heard the City of Charlotte actually encouraged Tent City. Where is the dignity in that? And yes, I’m active in my community and yes I want to help in solving these issues. The problem seems to be a very small group of people are making the so called solutions that don’t make sense. We must have those that are living there be a part of the solution. Thank you for bringing this to the forefront again.
This article does not get to the root of the homeless problem. Saying that people are homeless because of the high cost of providing a roof is simplistic. If that were the only cause, the person could move to a lower cost of living area and obtain an entry level job starting at $12/hour. They could then find other people to share living expenses with.
The real reasons are much more complex. Poor education and dropping out of school. Why don’t you propose training these individuals for the many unfilled jobs that pay a living wage? Or training them for a trade? Plumbers, electricians, etc are in short supply. Why aren’t you on CMS to provide a real education to our children? Why aren’t you railing against the economic disaster that single parent households bring? Teach these people how to compete at the game of life instead of teaching them to be victims
The lady who works full time can be subsidized at the local level. Why not place her, and others working that are in a homeless situation, in an extended stay hotel, where they would pay a percentage of the rent, and the city picking up the rest. It would serve as transitional housing, until more permanent housing could be found.
My reply was censored by this publication. Suffice it to say that this article fails to address the root causes of homelessness.
Yet another Democrat run city turned to sh*t. Then when people have had enough and flee to red states (like people in NY, MN and CA are already doing), they’ll continue to keep voting for their failed ideologies and ruin those cities too.