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37 minutes | Dec 10, 2020
Unhoused: Managing Scarcity
Traditionally, during winter months, additional shelter beds are made available to account for the added dangers that snow and freezing temperatures bring to people experiencing homelessness. Recent changes to the severe weather sheltering program, however, test Boulder County’s homelessness solutions strategy, as there are fewer shelter beds in the system this winter than there have been for years and new policies have the potential to further limit shelter access. Budgets are stressed, volunteer fleets depleted and unforeseen expenses continue to accrue in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, leaving very few options for those experiencing homelessness this winter. In the final episode of Unhoused, host Emma Athena looks at how the ongoing coronavirus pandemic continues to impact possible solutions to homelessness as the temperature drops and winter sets in. Listen here or subscribe to the entire series wherever you get your podcasts. A huge thank you to KGNU, specifically Maeve Conran, for making this podcast collaboration possible. The post Unhoused: Managing Scarcity appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
40 minutes | Dec 3, 2020
Unhoused: A tiny house, a big step
Tiny home communities across several American cities like Detroit, Los Angeles and Portland have helped alleviate homelessness, but the idea has been slow to catch on in Colorado. The Veterans Community Project (VCP) has successfully housed and served homeless veterans in Kansas City, Missouri, by designing and building tiny home villages which partner with existing local organizations to provide wraparound services to help keep people off the streets. Now, the organization is breaking ground in Boulder County for its latest project, but are micro communities for non-vets even a possibility given neighborhood push-back and a lack of political will? From Boulder Weekly and KGNU, join host Emma Athena as she analyzes how COVID-19 has changed the conversation around tiny homes as a solution for the unhoused. Episode 5, “A tiny house, a big step,” is available Thursday, Nov. 3. Find it at boulderweekly.com or wherever you get your podcasts. The post Unhoused: A tiny house, a big step appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
36 minutes | Nov 27, 2020
Unhoused: Recognizing realities
The increased visibility of street homelessness as a result of the coronavirus pandemic has motivated a wave of new conversations about the feasibility of sanctioned encampments in Boulder and elsewhere. The idea of a sanctioned campground for the unhoused is one that’s been loudly and routinely rejected by the larger Boulder community for decades. Concentrated public pressure has even motivated elected officials to move in the opposite direction, creating stricter anti-encampment policies over the years. But in a city where there are no day shelters, and the number of nighttime shelter beds have been reduced over the course of the last year while the criteria for who is eligible to sleep in those beds has also narrowed, many unhoused individuals feel they have no choice but to sleep outside. Homeless advocates have long argued a reliable and indiscriminate space for people to rest would go a long way in reducing the number of random camps that pop up in downtown Boulder. And sanctioned encampments are used elsewhere in the country, with dozens created to support the growing unhoused populations since the coronavirus pandemic began. Listen here or subscribe to the series wherever you get your podcasts. The post Unhoused: Recognizing realities appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
31 minutes | Nov 19, 2020
Unhoused: Gaining traction
With an eviction crisis still on the horizon, sanctioned overnight parking lots are being used nationwide to provide temporary relief for people living in vehicles — a common occurrence for those experiencing homelessness for the first time. In Boulder County this summer, the nonprofit Homeless Outreach Providing Encouragement (HOPE) created SafeLot, a program providing an approved parking lot for car dwellers to spend the night safely. But the idea of safe lots has created tension with the regional agency charged with reducing homelessness. Its Housing First approach, emphasizing more permanent housing solutions, strikes some as contradicting safe lots’ shorter-term fix. Safe lot advocates say it offers stability that acts as a bridge to a more settled lifestyle. Join host Emma Athena as she analyzes how COVID-19 has changed the conversation around safe lots as a solution for homelessness in episode 3 of Unhoused, a podcast collaboration from Boulder Weekly and KGNU. The post Unhoused: Gaining traction appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
37 minutes | Nov 12, 2020
Unhoused: On the brink
Stemming evictions is the first step to preventing homelessness, but in light of the pandemic, will it be enough? When an eviction moratorium expired in August and the government’s pandemic-aid spigot closed, Colorado nonprofits and public agencies, including those in Boulder County, mounted a coordinated response to address a looming homelessness crisis. A gusher of donations created an eviction legal defense fund, a rental assistance program and other aid to people struggling to pay utility and food bills. In just three months, 800 households received help in forestalling evictions while thousands more received legal and humanitarian services. Despite the community support and a new eviction moratorium set to expire before the new year, housing risks remain without a resumption of emergency government aid. Listen here or subscribe to the series wherever you get your podcasts. The post Unhoused: On the brink appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
36 minutes | Nov 5, 2020
Unhoused: Status Quo
Homelessness is not a new experience in Boulder County or across the country, and the coronavirus pandemic has only made the situation worse for many. Before we get into alternative or new solutions, we first need to look at the system as it stands today. In Boulder County, local housing authorities and nonprofits teamed up in 2017 to shift toward Housing First, an approach that has helped many cities address homelessness, but it has failed to make much impact in Boulder County and most people remain unserved by both temporary and permanent solutions. From Boulder Weekly and KGNU, join host Emma Athena as she analyzes how COVID-19 has changed the conversation around homelessness solutions. The post Unhoused: Status Quo appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
2 minutes | Oct 28, 2020
Podcast: Unhoused trailer
In light of the coronavirus pandemic, communities already struggling to provide services to the unhoused are seeking to end an enduring problem with new solutions: preventing evictions and exploring opportunities for safe lots, urban campgrounds and tiny homes in addition to the national Housing First strategy. Whether you live in Boulder or not, join host Emma Athena as she analyzes how COVID-19 has changed the conversation around homelessness solutions in this six-part series from Boulder Weekly and KGNU. The post Podcast: Unhoused trailer appeared first on Boulder Weekly.
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