Homeless person tent city on Chicago's Near West Side
Homeless person tent city on Chicago's Near West Side

Biden Takes on Homelessness With Bromides

Crossposted at Fix Homelessness

This month President Joe Biden released his homeless plan, “ALL IN: The Federal Strategic Plan to Prevent and End Homelessness.” Be it noted, that the plan is dated December 2022, so it’s not exactly new. But this is something former President Donald Trump did as well — conduct numerous roll-outs for the same scheme.

The Biden Administration touts a worthy goal — to reduce homelessness by 25% by January 2025. That’s more realistic than President Barack Obama’s 2013 pledge to end all homelessness by 2023. And Biden’s bound to get closer to his goal. But then, administrations never meet their goals on homelessness, so…

What struck me about the Biden plan is how thin it is on specifics and rich it is in bromides. As in:

“Homelessness has no place in America.”

“Ending homelessness requires an all-hands-on-deck response grounded in authentic collaboration.”

Consider language from the fact sheet:

  • Deploying dedicated teams across the federal government to identify opportunities for regulatory relief and flexibilities, navigate federal funding streams, and facilitate a peer learning network across the communities; and
  • Convening philanthropy, the private sector, and other communities to identify opportunities for follow-on support and collaboration.

In other words, there is no way to measure whether the plan worked or failed. Doing something about homelessness is not the point. Speaking as if you really want to do something about homelessness is paramount. 

And the tent cities proliferate…

Debra J. Saunders

Fellow, Chapman Center for Citizenship Leadership
A fellow with Discovery Institute’s Chapman Center for Citizen Leadership, Debra J. Saunders worked for more than thirty years covering politics on the ground and in Washington, as well as American culture, the news media, the criminal justice system, and dubious trends in public schools and prestigious universities. Her column is nationally syndicated with Creators Syndicate.