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Here's what happened when Portland tried a big gov't solution for homelessness

Officials say that although their “no-turn-away shelter strategy” failed spectacularly, they want it to be adopted state-wide and nationally. (Image Source: YouTube screenshot)

In October 2015, the city of Portland, Oregon, decided to simply provide shelter to every single homeless family that asked for it. The plan backfired.

Here's what happened

In 2015, Portland officials provided a $2 million budget for the family shelter service system.

Initially, there was some success with the program - in 2017 the number of homeless persons in Portland decreased.

But by the end of 2017, the program was in a crisis. There weren't enough shelter providers to handle the influx of homeless from outside the city and the county.

Rather than solving homelessness, the program spent all the resources the government had allocated to it, and not accomplished their goal.

The budget for the program exploded when it began to provide motel rooms for homeless families that they could not place in shelters.

In July, a Facebook post from the Portland police union proclaimed that homelessness had turned the city into "a cesspool."

Portland ended the policy in October.

Lesson learned? Not really

Despite the "no-turn-away shelter strategy" failing spectacularly, the lawmakers say that the lesson they learned is that in order for it to work, it has to be adopted state-wide, and even nationally.

Here's a video about the homeless problem in Portland:

[Ed. note: This article has been amended to exclude misleading statistics from King's County. We regret the error.]

One last thing…
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