610,042 people are homeless in the United States; nearly 2,000 of those people live in Idaho according to the Idaho 2015 Point-In-Time Count Report. This may or may not seem like a very significant number but after you consider the population of Idaho, it is quite significant. 15% of the homeless are located in the Canyon County region. While the number of homeless has decreased since 2014, there is still a large number of homeless. Most homeless in the region stay in abandoned buildings, outside on the street or in a park, or in a car or train. According to the 2015 Point-In-Time Court Report, “In 2015 25% spent the night in a vehicle, 34% outside and 41% in inside non-housing.” Most homeless said that they were homeless due to unemployment or they were unable to find affordable housing. There are homeless shelters in the area, but they can only house so many people every night, the rest are left to fend for themselves.
Housing should be provided for the homeless in the Canyon County. Nobody should be left to sleep on a park bench or in an abandoned building during Idaho’s frigid winter months and hot summer nights. With all of the housing units being built all over the county, some of them should be able to house those who are unable to pay rent elsewhere.
If the Canyon County were to build houses for the homeless, it would give the county a good reputation in Idaho and other places in the area.
The Canyon County would be a desired place to live if homes were provided for those who are unable to afford them. People would come to Canyon County to live in one of the houses and then stay in Canyon County after the fact, which would greatly benefit the community.
Providing homeless with homes would allow those people to be less stressed about their financial issues and focus on getting a job or saving up to rent their own home.
Building homes for the homeless in the county would put the Canyon County on the map as a place where people in the community take care of each other. It would increase the size of the community in a good way. Everything in the community would increase. Profits of local stores and businesses would increase due to the increase of people. It would allow for the homeless to focus on become financially stable and would increase the appeal of Canyon County.
Some people may say that if they didn’t want to be homeless then they could go and get a job. But the reality is, when a person says that they are homeless employers will choose other candidates over someone who is labeled as homeless. When you have the label of homeless, people just assume that you are lazy and don’t care about your health or family. This, however, is not true. Most homeless are homeless because they are unemployed due to several companies laying off workers due to the drop in the economy. To even apply for some jobs, you must have an address, so homeless are unable to even apply for those jobs.
Canyon County could build small communities that served as a sort of half-way house. People could stay there long enough to get a good job and move out into a house of their own.
Local businesses could provide supplies to build the homes and in return have to pay a lower amount of tax.
The Canyon County should provide housing for the homeless in the community. It would give Canyon County a good reputation, increases the size of the community, and make the community a less stressed out place to live. No one should have to be homeless when there are plenty of supplies that could be used to build houses for them.