Homeless Vancouver

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From the CBC:

A new study says providing shelter for the homeless with severe addictions and mental illness throughout British Columbia could save taxpayers millions of dollars.

“Addiction is the most prevalent mental health problem in both the street homeless and at-risk populations, followed by concurrent disorders and, less frequently, mental illness alone,” the Simon Fraser University report says.

The paper — titled Housing and Support for Adults with Severe Addictions and/or Mental Illnesses in British Columbia — says providing non-housing services for such people currently costs the public system more than $55,000 per year per person. It says providing adequate housing and supports could reduce this cost to $37,000 per year.

While their findings in no way surprise me, I have to say I’m not optimistic it will be anything other than a nice intelligent compassionate white paper.  As you notice the burden is shifted to the tax payer so why would the government care?  Also especially in the housing boom underway in our province and city, saving money is not the same as making money.  Particularly short term, high return lucrative money.

That’s how people buy influence, that’s how politicians buy elections.

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Published in: on March 24, 2008 at 9:52 pm  Leave a Comment  
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