‘We Have a Lot of People Who Have Big Hearts’: Veteran Homelessness Plummets Under Trump Administration

Homelessness rates for veterans are on the decline and Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Ben Carson claims it is because of the teamwork in the Trump administration.

Veteran homelessness rates drop by 5.3 percent. In 2017, HUD estimated that there were approximately 40,000 homeless veterans. This year, they estimate that number shrunk to 37,000 homeless veterans.

Sec. Carson told Fox News that he believes this decline will continue because of mixed methods approach of finding housing for veterans and ensuring that they receive counseling and mental health resources to prevent the veterans from returning to homelessness.

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“One percent of our population protects the other 99 percent of us and allows us to live in peace and freedom, so we should be willing to really help them out. Unfortunately, many of them are traumatized and have lots of things going on in their lives so they end up homeless on the streets. What we’ve discovered is that just putting them in a house doesn’t necessarily solve their problem or just giving them wrap around services, clinical services, and things like that don’t work. But when you combine those things together, we’ve had a tremendous impact on reducing the homelessness.”

Sec. Carson explained that he has been able to provide a more holistic solution to solving veteran’s homelessness because of the teamwork within President Donald Trump’s administration.

“This is a wonderful model of intra-agency cooperation and that’s one of the hallmarks of this administration. All the secretaries know each other. We work together. We talk about the problems and use our collective resources and powers to solve them.”

Although government agencies have been working on reducing veteran homelessness from above, Carson explained how important it is to form relationships on the ground with homeless veterans.

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“In many cases, you know, you have to establish relationships cause some people are traumatized to the point that they don’t trust anybody. So you know, it may be a matter of going out an establishing a relationship with them, talking to them, getting them to know your name. You know, a sandwich and a hot drink, something like that. After a while, they begin to believe. We have a lot of people who have big hearts who want to help, and we’re finding ways in this administration to allow them to be able to help their fellow Americans.”

Reducing veteran homelessness is clearly a top priority for the Trump administration, and although there is a lot of work to be done, it looks like some of the policies are taking hold and delivering positive results.

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