Binghamton forms commission to end veteran homelessness

Sep 8, 2014

 

Credit Elvert Barnes/via Flickr

The City of Binghamton has pledged to seek an end to homelessness among the city’s veterans. The first step, announced Friday, is the formation of a blue ribbon commission.

The city doesn’t know how many veterans are homeless and needs to figure out where to house them. Those will be the two main goals of the 15-member commission.

The announcement Friday included representatives from the federal government, the mayor and local organizations. Mayor Rich David painted the goal in moral terms.

“These are brave men and women who risk their lives to protect the freedom and virtue of democracy for all of us, for all Americans, and to be homeless in the City of Binghamton is really something that is very concerning.”

The city is signing onto the federal government’s Mayor’s Challenge to End Veteran Homelessness. That’s what brought representatives of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to Binghamton.

The ambitious goal is not without a precedent: Salt Lake City and Phoenix both announced earlier this year that they have ended homelessness among vets. But that achievement was the result of a ten-year plan and the vast majority of the funding came from federal grants.

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