Human First

What to Know: In a stunning admission, one of the San Francisco’s longtime Housing First advocates now calls for the City to primarily fund, if not exclusively, housing where residents agree to abstain from drug and alcohol use. “Current homeless policies make sober living too hard to obtain for the unhoused.”

The TPPF Take: Housing First, as a one-size-fits-all approach, has failed everywhere it has been tried.

“The ‘housing solves homelessness’ myth has unequivocally devastated lives and communities and has squandered billions in annual taxpayer funding,” says TPPF’s Michele Steeb. “The data have clearly revealed that the one-size-fits-all approach to homelessness—Housing First– experiment did not work. We need to employ a human-first approach, one that addresses the root causes of homelessness including trauma, mental illness and substance abuse disorder.”

For more on Housing First, click here.

Not a Good Look

What to Know: Medi-Cal (California’s expanded Medicaid program) provides eyeglasses to enrollees (most of whom are children). However, glasses arrive late, often broken already, or they don’t arrive at all.

The TPPF Take: As other states have learned, Medicaid expansion is one big broken promise.

“Medicaid doesn’t make people healthier,” notes TPPF’s David Balat. “Expanding Medicaid and crowding out the vulnerable populations inhibits access to care, hurts hospitals, and creates crowded emergency rooms.”

For more on Medicaid, click here.

Getting CJR Wrong

What to Know: In New York City, being soft on crime (and far too lenient with criminals) is being called “criminal justice reform. One result? The horrific attack on two NYPD officers in a subway last week.

The TPPF Take: Criminal justice reform must prioritize public safety.

“While prisons serve a critical role in society and violent criminals must be held to account, our correctional facilities—already overcrowded and short-staffed—must make room and prepare those in custody for the day they return to our communities,” says TPPF’s Scott Peyton. “Eventually, 95% will return.”

To view (or listen to) Right on Crime’s new podcast, click here.