Saturday, July 31, 2021

Play

Educators' unions call for efforts to ensure in-person learning keeps students, teachers, families, and staff safe; and an update on hate crimes by state.

Play

Congress passes Capitol security funding; House Freedom Caucus members want Cheney, Kinzinger out of GOP conference; Schumer closes a deal to advance $3.5 trillion reconciliation package; and a new report says investor-owned utilities try to block rooftop solar.

Albuquerque Mayor's TED Talk on Homelessness Nets Half-Million Viewers

Play

Friday, September 8, 2017   

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – Since mid-August, more than 600,000 viewers have watched Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry on YouTube, promoting the city's initiative to fight homelessness.

Started in 2015, the city program known as "There's a Better Way" pays panhandlers $9 an hour for daily work, and provides them with access to social services and housing.

The program had already received national publicity, when the TED Talks producers invited the Mayor to Washington, D.C., to share his views with an even wider audience. Berry says the program started as an alternative to giving panhandlers cash.

"To this point, we've had about a thousand people who have taken up our offer to work in our community, to help make our community a better place," he says. "We've cleaned up hundreds and hundreds of city blocks; we've had several people participate multiple times in the day-work program. It's connecting people to long-term services they need to get off the corner."

Berry says the program is now being used as a model for helping homeless people in 70 U.S. cities.

The City of Albuquerque has signs posted at intersections frequented by panhandlers urging those in need of food or shelter to call the city's 311 service. It added a van to its motor pool that also advertises the campaign and transports workers to a shelter at the end of their shift. Berry says studies show it's cheaper for cities to provide support services for homeless individuals than leave them on the streets.

"It's much more than just about pulling weeds and picking up trash," he adds. "It's about human dignity, it's about how do we do something different than just kick the can down the road, buy somebody a bus ticket to the next town - all these standard municipal approaches to panhandling, which have generally been in the punitive range."

The city originally budgeted $50,000 for the homeless outreach program in 2015, an amount that has more than tripled that in 2017 to ensure its continued success.


get more stories like this via email

In addition to roof repairs and other home improvements to lower utility bills, a Michigan League for Public Policy report recommends expanding utility-shutoff protections to include households with young children. (Adobe Stock)

Environment

LANSING, Mich. - High utility costs are a major burden for Michigan's low-income residents, and a new study says they have an impact on their health…


Environment

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A new report shows an effort by investor-owned utilities in the Sunshine State to block the growth of rooftop solar. The …

Health and Wellness

By Troy Pierson / Broadcast version by Mary Schuermann reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration. As marijuana becomes more …


Across the United States, 46 states have laws allowing for harsher punishment for crimes based on bias. (Ludk/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

SALT LAKE CITY - With rising numbers of people targeted in hate crimes and related violence, a new report analyzes the hate-crime laws in each state…

Social Issues

BOSTON - Educators' unions are calling on the state to support their efforts to ensure in-person learning in the fall keeps students, teachers…

According to AARP Connecticut, 47% of family caregivers have had at least one financial setback, such as having less money for retirement or savings, or cutting back on their own healthcare spending. (Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

HARTFORD, Conn. - In Connecticut, more than 460,000 people care for close friends or family members who can't manage on their own - and their …

Health and Wellness

CONCORD, N.H. - New Hampshire advocates for affordable healthcare access want Congress to lower prescription costs by allowing Medicare to negotiate …

Social Issues

FREDERICKSBURG, Va. -- With many Virginians still experiencing pandemic-related unemployment, students at a state community college were able to get …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021