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HOMELESS DAY ONE: 3 Western U.S. cities decrease homeless populations

By: The Gazette
August 31, 2014 Updated: September 2, 2014 at 12:35 am
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photo - Albuquerque Heading Home, an initiative to end chronic homelessness in New Mexico’s largest city, has garnered attention from other cities trying to solve an enduring urban problem.
Albuquerque Heading Home, an initiative to end chronic homelessness in New Mexico’s largest city, has garnered attention from other cities trying to solve an enduring urban problem. 

Three Western cities have seen sizable decreases in their overall homeless numbers, particularly in the chronic homeless population, and much of the credit is given to programs that follow a Housing First model. As the name implies, Housing First-type programs provide a stable home to homeless people first, then help them address underlying issues such as mental illness, substance abuse or physical ailments. - Homeward Pikes Peak in Colorado Springs has 43 Housing First units, and other organizations in the area also provide a few units that follow the model. But those who work with homeless individuals say there isn't enough housing units in the area, and even if there were, there aren't enough support services for follow-through help. - Here is a look at the more successful programs in Albuquerque, Salt Lake City and Phoenix.

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